Washington State: High Radon Levels in City Hall Force Employee Relocation

Radon levels at Washougal City Hall force changes

Air quality testing at Washougal City Hall revealed high levels of radon gas throughout the building, prompting the mayor to relocate most employees to other city buildings.

Exposure to radon, a natural component in soil gases, can cause cancer, according to the Environmental Protection Agency. The average indoor radon level is 1.3 picoCuries of radiation per liter (pCi/L) of air, the EPA says.

Testing in Washougal City Hall earlier this month measured levels between 11 pCi/L and 26 pCi/L, with the highest concentration in a closed basement storage area, Mayor Sean Guard said in a news release. Findings were received Monday.

A level of 4 pCi/L should prompt action to lower the radon level, the EPA says. Guard said the EPA stopped short of calling City Hall unsafe but said it required immediate action.