area briefs

area briefs

CURBSIDE CHRISTMAS TREE PICKUP

MOORHEAD – The City of Moorhead will do curbside Christmas tree pickup on your garbage day starting Tuesday, January 3, 2023. 

Christmas tree pickup will run January 3-13. Here are some important tips:

• Place trees 3-5 feet from your garbage cart

• Please do not place trees on snow banks

• Remove plastic bags, lights, wood and metal stands (trees will be chipped)

• The City will not pick up Christmas trees after January 13.

RADON TESTING DURING HOME PURCHASES DECLINED NEARLY 40% IN 2022

The number of home radon tests completed during real estate sales in 2022 was down 39% from 2020, even though home sales did not decline, a new analysis from the Minnesota Department of Health (MDH) shows. Reduced testing means fewer home buyers are identifying and reducing this cancer-causing hazard.

MDH analyzed professional radon testing data for 2020 to 2022 and found that in 2022 there were 19,976 real estate tests reported by professionals, which was lower than the 32,537 tests reported in 2020.

The colorless, odorless gas occurs naturally in Minnesota soils and is found at elevated levels in about 40% of all Minnesota homes. It is the leading cause of lung cancer among non-smokers. In fact, each year radon kills more than 21,000 people across the country. While there are ways to test for radon and fix it, many people are unaware of the risks.

Fortunately, the radon risk is largely preventable by testing homes and reducing radon problems by installing radon reduction systems. Real estate transactions present an opportunity for home buyers to reduce their lung cancer risk. If the radon level is high, buyers could request that sellers install a radon mitigation system. With more people working from home, it’s more important than ever to test homes for radon, health officials say. 

During January, Radon Action Month, MDH is making a special push to urge everyone to test their home for radon, including when purchasing a property.

“Unfortunately, we have seen a decline in radon testing reported to us during home sales,” said Dan Tranter, supervisor of the MDH Indoor Air Program. “Radon professionals have also told us about a decline in their services. During the hot housing market in the last couple of years, some home buyers were skipping home inspections and radon tests.”

Health professionals recommend testing for radon during real-estate transactions. Sellers must disclose any prior radon testing and provide a two-page publication to buyers under state law. Radon tests should be incorporated into a home inspection. MDH licenses home inspectors and other professionals who test for radon.

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