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Lead Paint

Can routine home repairs cause lead poisoning?

There can be a danger of lead poisoning whenever painted surfaces inside or outside the home are scraped for repainting, or woodwork is stripped or removed, or windows or walls are removed. This is because lead paint is found in almost all Massachusetts homes built before 1978, and so many of Massachusetts' homes are old. Do not use power sanders, propane torches or heat guns to remove leaded paint, as these methods create a lot of lead dust and fumes. Temporarily move your family (especially children and pregnant women) out of the home while the work is being done and cleaned up, or at a minimum, tape up plastic sheets to completely seal off the work area. Get a lead inspection done, so that you will know which surfaces have lead paint and need extra care when preparing for and doing home repair work, and during cleanup afterwards. Do not do repairs in older homes without learning about safe ways to do the work to reduce the danger of lead dust. Hundreds of cases of childhood and adult lead poisoning result each year from do-it-yourself home projects.

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