Thursday, May 6, 2010

EPA Proposes Additional New Rules with Immense Implications Regarding Lead and Lead-Based Paint

On May 6, 2010, the EPA proposed additional new rules regarding lead and lead-based paint, including requirements for contractors that may disturb as little as two square feet of paint during their operations.

The proposed new rules also discuss the fact that, although "child-occupied" spaces have been regulated since 1978 as to the permitted lead content in paint, the same regulation has not been in place for commercial, industrial or public buildings. The proposed new rules address these issues.

The EPA has measured the travel capacity of lead dust from renovation and/or demolition work up to 300 yards or more (via air to soil) despite the use of wetting and other approved dust-mitigation techniques.

The implications are enormous. This will affect not only all contractors that may disturb less than two square feet of paint but will also affect owners/operators of structures that have been renovated/demolished or are likely to be renovated or demolished.

We've been talking about ensuring our contractor clients are covered for lead for weeks, but now is the time to ensure that all of our clients, including owners and operators of property are insured for this exposure.

Currently, fixed-site PLL policies exclude abatement of lead in structures, unless carved back into the policy for coverage. However, these policies currently do cover lead in soil or groundwater, as a rule.

Public comments to the proposed rules are due no later than July 6, 2010. See the full rules as proposed and discussed at 75 Fed. Reg. 87 (pages 25037, et. seq.)

Heightened public awareness about these issues will only increase the likelihood of litigation from those that perceive they have been injured by lead ingestion or that their property has been damaged by lead-dust travel.

It is time to get these exposures covered ASAP.

For more information, contact
Mary Busby
: 216 367-4920  |

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