Boston, Mass. -- New Hampshire Plate Glass Corp., based in Portsmouth, N.H., faces a penalty of up to $90,750 for allegedly violating requirements designed to protect children from exposure to lead-based paint during painting and other renovation activities.
The alleged violations occurred during a window renovation project performed by the company at the former Frisbee School in Kittery, Maine. The Kittery site was, at the time of the renovation, a child-occupied facility subject to EPA’s Renovation, Repair and Painting (RRP) Rule.
The violations were brought to EPA’s attention via an anonymous tip, after which EPA and Maine Dept. of Environmental Protection performed an inspection of the site in February 2012. Based on the inspection, EPA determined that the company had not complied with the required work practice requirements of the RRP Rule, including failure to assign a certified renovator to the work site; failure to cover ground with plastic sheeting; and failure to contain waste from the renovation activity.
EPA’s RRP Rule is designed to prevent exposure to lead-based paint and/or lead-based paint hazards. The rule requires individuals performing renovations for compensation at most pre-1978 housing and child-occupied facilities to be properly trained. There are certification and training requirements for individual renovators and firms performing renovations to ensure that safe work practices are followed during renovations. The rule became effective on April 22, 2010 and allows for the assessment of penalties that may reach up to a maximum of $37,500 per violation per day.
Infants and young children are especially vulnerable to lead paint exposure, which can cause developmental impairment, reading and learning disabilities, impaired hearing, reduced attention span, hyperactivity and behavioral problems. Adults with high lead levels can suffer difficulties during pregnancy, high blood pressure, nerve disorders, memory problems and muscle and joint pain.