We have provided information about lead paint so you can be an informed homeowner. The EPA has new guidelines for contractors working on homes that were built prior to 1978. The following lead paint information will help you protect yourself and your family.
Common renovation activities like sanding, cutting, and demolition can create hazardous lead dust and chips by disturbing lead-based paint, which can be harmful to adults and children.
To protect against this risk, on April 22, 2008, EPA issued a rule requiring the use of lead-safe practices and other actions aimed at preventing lead poisoning. Under the rule, beginning April 22, 2010, contractors performing renovation, repair and painting projects that disturb lead-based paint in homes, child care facilities, and schools built before 1978 must be certified and must follow specific work practices to prevent lead contamination.
EPA requires that firms performing renovation, repair, and painting projects that disturb lead-based paint in pre-1978 homes, child care facilities and schools be certified by EPA and that they use certified renovators who are trained by EPA-approved training providers to follow lead-safe work practices. Individuals can become certified renovators by taking an eight-hour training course from an EPA-approved training provider. Contractors must use lead-safe work practices and follow these three simple procedures:
Contain the work area
Clean up thoroughly
Beginning in December 2008, the rule requires that contractors performing renovation, repair and painting projects that disturb lead-based paint provide to owners and occupants of child care facilities and to parents and guardians of children under age six that attend child care facilities built prior to 1978 the lead hazard information pamphlet:
The rule affects paid renovators who work in pre-1978 housing and child-occupied facilities, including:
•Maintenance workers in multi-family housing
•Painters and other specialty trades.
Under the rule, child-occupied facilities are defined as residential, public or commercial buildings where children under age six are present on a regular basis. The requirements apply to renovation, repair or painting activities. The rule does not apply to minor maintenance or repair activities where less than six square feet of lead-based paint is disturbed in a room or where less than 20 square feet of lead-based paint is disturbed on the exterior. Window replacement is not minor maintenance or repair.
Deteriorated Lead-Based Paint - paint known to contain lead that shows signs of peeling, chipping, chalking, blistering, alligatoring or otherwise separating from its substrate.
Dust Removal - the process of removing dust to avoid creating a greater problem of spreading lead particles; usually through wet or damp collection or through the use of special HEPA vacuums.
Hazard Abatement - long-term measures to remove the hazards of lead-based paint through selective paint stripping of deteriorated areas; or, in some cases, replacement of deteriorated features.
Hazard Control - measures to reduce lead hazards to make housing safe for young children. Can be accomplished with interim (short-term) or hazard abatement (long-term) controls.
Interim Control - short-term methods to remove lead dust, stabilize deteriorating surfaces, and repaint surfaces. Maintenance can ensure that housing remains lead-safe.
Lead-based Paint - any existing paint, varnish, shellac or other coating that is in excess of 1.0 mg/cm2 as measured by an XRF detector or greater than 0.5% by weight from laboratory analysis ( 5,000 ppm, 5,000 ug/g, or 5,000 mg/kg). For new products, the Consumer Safety Act notes 0.06% as the maximum amount of lead allowed in paint.
Lead-safe - the act of making a property safe from contamination by lead-based paint, lead-dust, and lead in soil generally through short and long-term methods to remove it, or to isolate it from small children.
Risk Assessment - an on-site investigation to determine the presence and condition of lead-based paint, including limited test samples, and an evaluation of the age, condition, housekeeping practices, and uses of a residence.