Creating Lead Hazards

Part two in the Series on Lead Based Paint Hazards

In the last article I discussed the generalities of lead based paint hazards and what health effects it can have on children in particular.  I am now going to move the discussion forward by discussing how easy it is to inadvertently create a lead hazard.  I recall sitting in my first certification class listening to the instructor discuss how lead based paint hazards are created and thinking to myself that it is just too easy to create lead based paint hazards.

What is a Lead Hazard?

In its simplest form a lead hazard is any accumulation of lead dust with a concentration greater than 40 micro-grams per square foot of floor space, an accumulation of lead dust on any indoor horizontal surface greater than 250 micro-grams per square foot, and 400 micro-grams per square foot for exterior floors and horizontal surfaces.  Lead does accumulate in soil and existing law states that levels of 400 ppm (parts per million) in children’s play areas or 1000 ppm in all other bare soil areas are considered contaminated.

Lead Hazard

Lead Hazard on Front Porch

 Creating Lead Hazards

Inadvertently, creating lead hazards can occur from lack of maintenance (i.e. allowing lead based paint to crack, peel, ect), sanding lead based paint, normal wear and tear from painted windows and doors rubbing on jambs and sills, water damage, and renovation.  Of course, there are many other circumstances that can create lead based paint hazards the take away here is any time that lead based paint is disturbed there is a potential for lead dust creation and accumulation.