EPA not enforcing lead-based paint rule, says Inspector General

Health

FEEDING HILLS, Mass. (WWLP) – The office of the Inspector General says the EPA is not effectively enforcing a lead-based paint rule.

The inspector released a report Monday, saying the EPA does not have a strategy that effectively implements and enforces a rule intended to protect the public from hazards caused by renovations and lead paint.

Home renovations can disturb lead paint, creating dust that can be hazardous, particularly to children.

The report found that the EPA cannot determine if they’re actually achieving the program’s goal of protecting the public, particularly in child-occupied facilities.

Childhood exposure to lead can have serious consequences. Tim Foley, an employee of Environmental Testing Services Inc., told 22News that lead dust and peeling paint are commonly inhaled by children.

“Talk about things that people need to worry about, it’s dust. Dust is generated either from friction surfaces or peeling lead paint,” said Foley. “Lead poisoning in children creates a slowing in the development, and you could knock a few IQ points off a child in their development.”

According to the state’s public health department, in our area, Chicopee, Holyoke, and Springfield are high-risk communities for childhood lead poisoning.

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