Lead Hazard Prevention
Every year, hundreds of children in Maine are poisoned by lead. Children less than six years old are most at risk of lead poisoning. Most lead poisonings in Maine are caused by exposure to dust from old lead paint. Lead can cause learning disabilities and behavioral problems that last a lifetime.
More than half of Maine homes may have lead paint. Exposure to lead is most common in buildings built before 1950 (when paint contained up to 50% lead), and in buildings built before 1978 when repainting or remodeling is done.
What is a lead hazard?
A lead hazard is any condition that may cause exposure to lead from lead-contaminated dust, lead-contaminated soil, lead-contaminated water or lead-based paint that is in poor condition. Maine DEP regulations define the paint conditions and amounts of lead in dust, soil and water that constitute a lead hazard. It is possible to have lead paint in a home without it being a lead hazard.
By law, lead hazards may only be identified by a Maine-licensed lead inspector or risk assessor in the course of a lead inspection. Lead inspections may be performed to comply with a licensing requirement, as requested prior to a real estate sale, as part of a lead poisoning investigation, or because an owner wants to learn where there are lead hazards and lead paint in a home.
For more information contact the Lead Hazard Prevention staff at (207) 287-7751 or 287-2651.
Federal Renovation, Repair and Painting Rule - New federal rule requires contractors to do lead-safe renovations in homes and day cares built before 1978. (Off Site)
Residential Lead Inspections conducted in Maine - a listing of properties which have had a lead inspection
Alliance for Healthy Homes - The Alliance for Healthy Homes works to protect children from lead and other home environmental health hazards.
Consumer Product Safety Commission - recalls of products because of lead content
Maine Healthy Homes Information and Resources (Maine CDC)
National Center for Healthy Housing – The National Center for Healthy Housing brings together the heath, environmental and housing communities to create healthy and safe homes for children through practical and proven steps which decrease children's exposure to lead and other hazards in the home.
- Maine's Lead & Mercury Wheel Weight Ban
- Contractors and landlords - Learn about US EPA’s Renovation, Repair and Painting rule (Off Site)
- Report violations of the Renovation, Repair and Painting rule to US EPA (Off Site)
- Maine Childhood Lead Poisoning Prevention (Off Site)
- Listings of DEP Licensed Lead Professionals, Licensed Abatement Contractors, and Lead-Smart Renovators
- Don't Spread Lead (pdf format) – A do-it-yourself guide to lead-safe painting, repair and home improvement - To request a CD showing how to work lead-safe, contact Maine DEP Lead Hazard Prevention Program at 1-800-452-1942-(pdf, 671KB)