The Window & Door
Dealers Alliance (WDDA) is urging dealers to help it oppose clearance
testing requirements that could be added to the Environmental Protection
Agency’s lead paint regulations that went into effect in April. A proposed rule
would require contractors working on jobs where lead safe work practices are
mandated to achieve certain clearance levels before concluding the renovation
According to a WDDA, contractors would be required to hire an EPA certified
inspector, certified dust sampling technician, and/or certified risk assessor.
This person would collect dust samples to be sent to an EPA-accredited lab to a
conduct lead-based paint dust clearance test after the contractor has completed
“cleaning verification.” According to the EPA’s own estimate, contractors may
incur a minimum cost of $250 for testing lab fees, but industry costs could
exceed that amount significantly.
Instances where dust-wipe tests would be required include jobs involving
demolition or removal of plaster or removal of paint by power sanders or
blasters. Places where the tests have to be made include floors, windowsills,
and window troughs. In some cases, the effort involved in cleaning up the site
post-renovation and then testing to assure it’s safe–collectively known as the
“clearance event”–would have to be performed by a third-party company.
ProSales Online notes “In a time when the construction industry is
struggling to emerge from recession, and when the administration is providing
subsidies for weatherization of homes to save energy and create jobs, the EPA
rule threatens to destroy thousands of jobs.” Likewise, in a WDDA-written draft
letter to the EPA, dealers are urged to tell EPA that “it is a virtual certainty
that imposing additional requirments on top of those that took effect in April
will cause substantial harm to the vast majority of window and door dealers.”
experts had predicted RRP
will increase remodeling costs by 5% to 15% even before the EPA proposed new
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