Project Safety Tips

  • Lead-safe Work Practices During Installation

    12/6/2010 12:00 AM

    The EPA enacted the Renovation, Repair and Repainting Rule (RRP) to protect residents of homes built prior to 1978 from the dangers of lead paint. This federal law requires contractors that are hired to perform renovation, repair and painting projects in homes, child care facilities, and schools built before 1978 that disturb painted surfaces to be certified and follow specific work practices to prevent lead contamination. The work practices the contractor must follow include these three simple procedures: 1. Contain the work area. The area must be contained so that dust and debris do not escape from that area. Warning signs must be put up and plastic or other impermeable material and tape must be used as appropriate to cover the floors and any furniture that cannot be moved, and to seal off doors and heating and cooling system vents. These will help prevent dust or debris from getting outside the work area. 2. Avoid renovation methods that generate large amounts of lead-contaminated dust.  Some methods generate so much lead-contaminated dust that their use is prohibited.  They are include open flame burning or torching, sanding, grinding, planing, needle gunning, or blasting with power tools and equipment not equipped with a shroud and HEPA vacuum attachment, using a heat gun at temperatures greater than 1,100°F. There is no way to eliminate dust, but some renovation methods make less dust than others. Contractors may choose to use various methods to minimize dust generation, including using water to mist areas before sanding or scraping; scoring paint before separating components; and prying and pulling apart components instead of breaking them. 3. Clean up thoroughly. The work area should be cleaned up daily to keep it as clean as possible. When all the work is done, the area must be cleaned up using special cleaning methods before taking down any plastic that isolates the work area from the rest of the home. The special cleaning methods should include using a HEPA vacuum to clean up dust and debris on all surfaces, followed by wet wiping and wet mopping with plenty of rinse water.  When the final cleaning is done, look around. There should be no dust, paint chips, or debris in the work area. If you see any dust, paint chips, or debris, the area must be re-cleaned.

  • RRP and Lead-based Paint Testing

    12/2/2010 12:00 AM

    The EPA enacted the Renovation, Repair and Repainting Rule (RRP) to protect residents of homes built prior to 1978 from the dangers of lead paint.  The regulations apply to any contractor that works on older homes, including renovation contractors, maintenance workers in multi-family properties, and painting contractors, as well as other trades like plumbing, flooring contractors, HVAC companies, and replacement contractors for windows, doors and siding. The RRP rule requires these contractors to give customers a pamphlet called “Renovate Right” and have it signed before beginning the job.  Under the law, homeowners are no longer able to waive the use of lead-safe work practices in their homes.  Before performing any work, the contractor must test for lead paint on surfaces to be affected by the planned work. If lead is found to be present, the contractor must perform the work using lead-safe work practices as specified in the RRP Rule.  The goal is to contain lead dust during the renovation.  It’s important to note that the contractor is not responsible for or required to remove the lead from the home. Contractors must document each step of the RRP rule compliance, including lead test results, licensing, and documentation showing that necessary steps were taken to perform the installation as laid out by the Rule.

  • Lead-based Paint in Older Homes

    12/1/2010 12:00 AM

    Earlier this year, the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) implemented a law that’s been in the works for almost 20 years.  The Renovation, Repair and Repainting Rule (RRP) was enacted to protect residents of older homes from the dangers of lead paint.  Although lead is harmful to everyone, it’s particularly dangerous for children under six as it has been linked to birth defects and learning disabilities. Many homes that were built before 1978 contain lead-based paint.  In fact, the EPA estimates that about 50% of homes built prior to 1978 contain lead paint.  To protect homeowners, the RRP rule places regulations on any contractor that works on older homes, including renovation contractors, maintenance workers in multi-family properties, and painting contractors, as well as other trades like plumbing, flooring contractors, HVAC companies, and replacement contractors for windows, doors and siding. These companies must comply with the law and become EPA-certified, or face fines of up to $37,500 per incident per day.  The EPA has set forth clear guidelines regarding safety, containment, clean-up and documentation that the trained certified installers must follow. When deciding on which contractor to hire for a renovation project, make sure they inform you of their lead-safe practices and adherence to the RRP rule.    

  • Cleaning gutters - dangerous to your health?

    10/25/2010 12:00 AM

    The U.S. Consumer Products Safety Commission reports about 165,000 Americans require medical treatment for ladder-related injuries each year.  And according to the World Health Organization, the United States leads the world in ladder deaths. Each year, there are 532,000 people injured, more than 164,000 emergency room-treated injuries and 300 deaths in the U.S. that are caused by falls from ladders. Most ladder deaths are from falls of 10 feet or less. With the autumn leaves starting to fall, are you thinking of cleaning out your gutters?  Be careful.  Better yet, replace your gutters with Thompson Creek’s gutter system and you will never worry about clogged gutters again.  Our gutter system is guaranteed never to clog or pull away from your home, and is backed by our double lifetime guarantee.

  • Fall Gutter Problems

    9/15/2010 12:00 AM

    The colors of fall leaves are beautiful.  The damage they can do can be costly.  Fall leaves can clog your rain gutters and downspouts preventing your gutter system from properly routing rain water away from your home.  You can either climb a ladder to clean your gutters yourself, or pay someone to do it for you.  Better yet, you can install a gutter system that is guaranteed never to clog. Ladder injuries are climbing.  The U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission reports that over 164,000 people visit an emergency room in the United States each year as a result of a ladder injury.  Clogged gutters can cause leaking basements, cracked foundations, wood rot, landscape erosion, and sagging driveways and walkways.  Now is the best time to prepare your home for the falling leaves by installing a maintenance-free gutter system.

  • Cleaning gutters – dangerous to your health?

    8/1/2010 12:00 AM

    The U.S. Consumer Products Safety Commission reports about 165,000 Americans require medical treatment for ladder-related injuries each year.  And according to the World Health Organization, the United States leads the world in ladder deaths. Each year, there are 532,000 people injured, more than 164,000 emergency room-treated injuries and 300 deaths in the U.S. that are caused by falls from ladders. Most ladder deaths are from falls of 10 feet or less.   Thinking of cleaning out your gutters?  Be careful.  Better yet, replace your gutters with Thompson Creek’s gutter system and you will never worry about clogged gutters again.  Our gutter system is guaranteed never to clog or pull away from your home, and is backed by our double-lifetime guarantee.

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