District 58 tests its buildings for radon on a rotating basis. Radon is a colorless, odorless and radioactive gas produced naturally through the decay of uranium within the soil. Radon may enter a building through foundation cracks or openings in drains, sumps and water/gas supply pipes. Inhalation of significant amounts of radon gas over an extended period of time has been linked to lung cancer. District 58’s radon testing is conducted in accordance with the rules and regulations established by the Illinois Emergency Management Agency’s Division of Nuclear Safety. District 58 contracts with a professional radon measurement professional (Aires Consulting) to properly test its schools for radon levels.
2017-18 Radon Testing Results:
- Pierce Downer #1 – tested Dec. 4-7, 2017; all results were below the EPA action limit of 4.0 pCi/L except for classrooms 103 and 105 (Mrs. deBuhr’s room and Ms. Lindberg’s room). Per the EPA’s recommendation, the rooms were inspected, resealed and retested.
- Pierce Downer #2 – tested for the second time on Jan. 22-26, 2018; Although the radon concentrations had decreased, radon levels in classrooms 103 and 106 were still slightly elevated. A second inspection of both classrooms was conducted, and a few minor foundational cracks were identified and sealed. Aires Consulting began retesting these classrooms (the third time) again in March. This follow-up testing took approximately 4-6 weeks and showed that these two classrooms continued to have slightly elevated radon levels. All other classrooms and areas tested normal and below the EPA limits. In accordance with the recommendations of IEMA and Aires Consulting, District 58 installed radon mitigation systems in rooms 103 and 106 over the summer.
- Pierce Downer #1-4 – tested for the fourth time Aug. 2-6, 2018. District 58 conducted follow-up testing on the overall effectiveness of the new mitigation systems. Test results indicated radon levels were much lower at less than 1 pCi/L, which is well below the EPA action levels of 4.0 pCi/L. Additionally, a final building wide test will be performed to record final overall measurements post mitigation.
District 58 anticipates the final testing results will also be much improved with the mitigation systems in place. Another notification will be sent if results are different than anticipated and/or above EPA action levels.
- Hillcrest – tested March 27-30, 2018; all results were below the EPA action limit of 4.0 picoCuries per liter of air (pCi/L)
- Kingsley – tested March 27-30, 2018; all results were below the EPA action limit of 4.0 pCi/L
- Henry Puffer – tested March 27-30, 2018; all results were below the EPA action limit of 4.0 pCi/L