A Pilot Survey of In-Service Home Arsenic Tracked in from Chromated Copper Arsenate–Treated Decks

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Arsenic is a known carcinogen. It is also known to be readily dislodgeable from chromated copper arsenate (CCA)–treated lumber. The floors of in-service homes were tested for inorganic arsenic using a wipe method similar to the U.S. Housing and Urban Development (HUD) method for lead dust clearance sampling. Additionally, a hand-sampling method was used that involved direct dermal contact with the indoor floor surface. Amount of dislodgeable arsenic on the decks was highly correlated with arsenic concentrations on the indoor floors. Indoor arsenic concentrations were highest directly adjacent to the door. Concentrations in samples taken from the middle of rooms were less than half the concentrations of door samples, while concentrations in samples taken from untrodden floor space in the corners were mostly below the method detection limit. At a home without a CCA-treated deck, no measurable arsenic was found.

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