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City Communications Office

City of Kansas City, Mo.

www.kcmo.org

CONTACT: City Communications Office, 816-513-1349

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE: April 20, 2010

City urges compliance with new EPA lead-safe work rules

The City of Kansas City, Mo., Health Department is advising the public that the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency recently established new regulations to protect children, workers and residents from exposure to lead paint hazards. These regulations, known as the Lead-Based Paint Renovation, Repair and Painting Rule or RRP, take effect April 22, 2010.

“Decreasing exposure to lead paint hazards will dramatically improve the health of families who live in older housing and workers who maintain those properties,” said Amy Roberts, R.N., B.S.N., manager of the Health Department’s Childhood Lead Poisoning Prevention Program.

The new regulation requires anyone who performs renovation, remodeling or painting for a fee in residences, child care facilities and schools built before 1978 to take simple, low-cost precautions to avoid creating and spreading lead dust, and to clean up any dust that is generated. It also requires all companies and their employees to be properly trained to use these lead-safe work practices in an effort to minimize lead exposure to building occupants.

“We urge businesses and workers to comply with the Renovating, Repair and Painting Rule to protect themselves, their families and their clients,” said Roberts. “Lead poisoning continues to be a major problem in Kansas City.”

Last year, Health Department statistics showed over 1,500 children were affected by lead in Kansas City, Mo. The new regulations will help reduce this number by preventing the presence of lead hazards following renovation activity. Even small amounts of lead exposure can affect the development of a child’s brain.

Certification is achieved by successfully completing an 8-hour training course offered by an EPA-accredited training provider. Several certified trainers are currently offering classes in the Kansas City metropolitan area.

For more information about the RRP rule or to obtain a list of certified trainers in your area, please contact the National Lead Information Center at 800-424-LEAD or www.epa.com/lead. You may also contact the Health Department’s Childhood Lead Poisoning Prevention Program at 816-513-6048.

Media inquiries about this topic should be directed to Jeff Hershberger, public information officer for the Health Department, 816-840-2548 (pager).

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