What is lead-based paint?
Lead is a toxic metal that can cause serious health problems if it’s ingested or if dust containing lead is inhaled. Up until 1978, when federal regulations restricted the use of lead in household paint, lead was a common component in exterior and interior paints.
Where is lead found?
Lead can be found in all parts of our environment – the air, the soil, the water, and even inside our homes. Lead and lead compounds have been used in a wide variety of products found in and around our homes, including paint, ceramics, pipes, and plumbing materials, solders, gasoline, batteries, ammunition, and cosmetics. Federal and state regulatory standards have helped to reproduce the amount of lead in air, drinking water, soil, consumer products, food, and occupational settings.
What are the health effects of lead?
Lead is a highly toxic metal that may cause a range of health problems, especially in young children. When lead is absorbed into the body, it can cause damage to the brain and other vital organs, like the kidneys, nerves, and blood. Lead may also cause behavior problems, learning disabilities, seizures and in extreme cases, death. Some symptoms of lead poisoning may include headaches, stomachaches, nausea, tiredness, and irritability. Children who are lead poisoned may show symptoms.
Both inside and outside the home, deteriorated lead-paint mixes with household dust and soil and becomes tracked in. Children may become poisoned by; putting their hands or other lead-contaminated objects into their mouths, eating paint chips found in homes with peeling or flaking lead-based paint, or playing in lead-contaminated soil.
What are the dangers of lead paint in homes?
If your home was built before 1978, there is a good chance it has lead-based paint. In 1978, there federal government banned consumer uses of lead-containing paint, but some states banned it even earlier. Lead paint is still present in millions of homes, sometimes under layers of newer paint. If the paint is in good shape, the lead paint is usually not a problem. Deteriorating lead-based paint (peeling, chipping, chalking, cracking, damaged, or damp) is a hazard and needs immediate attention.
What does the EPA’s RRP Rule require?
The rule requires workers to be certified and trained in the use of lead-safe work practices, and requires renovation, repair, and painting firms to be EPA-certified. These requirements became fully effective April 22, 2010.
Who is covered by the RRP Rule?
The rule applies to all firms and individuals who are paid to perform renovation, repair, and painting activities. This includes home improvement contractors, painters, and other specialty trades.