RENO—University of Nevada Cooperative Extension’s Radon Education Program is offering free radon test kits at 950 Campton St. Ely through Feb. 28. In addition, there will be educational presentations on the dangers of radon Feb. 16 in Sparks, Feb. 28 in Yerington and March 2 in Stateline.

Radon is a naturally occurring, radioactive gas that is colorless, odorless and tasteless. It comes from the ground and can accumulate in homes, increasing the risk of lung cancer. The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency estimates 21,000 Americans die each year from radon-caused lung cancer, killing more people than secondhand smoke, drunk driving, falls in the home, drowning or house fires.

In Nevada, one in four homes tested show radon concentrations at or above the EPA action level. According to experts, living in a home with radon concentrations at the action level poses as much risk of developing lung cancer as smoking about half a pack of cigarettes a day.

The risk of radon-caused lung cancer can be reduced. The first step is a simple three-day test to determine if a house has a radon problem, and winter is an ideal time to test a home for radon. If radon problems are found, they can be fixed.

A list of where free kits can be obtained throughout the state can be found at[]. Scheduled presentations on radon are:Feb. 16 at the Sparks Library, 1125 12th St., Sparks, at 6 p.m.Feb. 28 at the Yerington Intermediate School library, 215 Pearl St., Yerington, at 6 p.m.March 2 at the Tahoe Regional Planning Agency, 128 Market St., Stateline, at 6 p.m.For more information, call the Radon Hotline at 888-RADON10 (888-723-6610) or visit the Nevada Radon Education Program website at[]. Cooperative Extension, the EPA and the Nevada Division of Public and Behavioral Health urge all Nevadans to test their homes for radon.

The Nevada Radon Education Program is a program of University of Nevada Cooperative Extension and is funded by the Nevada Division of Public and Behavioral Health. Since the program began in 2007, more than 23,000 homes have been tested in Nevada.