Lead Risk Assessment Training Video

This video is for use as a reference
tool by people certified by the Wisconsin Department of Health Services
as lead risk Assessors or lead hazard investigators. It covers the complete
risk assessment process required when assessing a residential or child-occupied property to determine the existence, nature, severity, and location
of lead-based paint hazards. This video will also highlight the additional
criteria required when conducting a risk assessment of a property where a child
has been identified with an elevated blood lead level. Please contact Jeff Raiche-Gill with the Wisconsin Childhood Lead Poisoning Prevention Program at 608-266-9382 with questions regarding this video or
the risk assessment protocol. When you arrive for your appointment at
a property, make sure you are professional and friendly to the owner
or tenants, if a rental property. Introduce yourself and make sure to
identify your agency and why you are there. Explain what you will be doing
during the risk assessment. Let the family know that you are only there to
assess the property for lead hazards and to identify the source of lead exposure
if the risk assessment is being conducted because of an elevated blood
lead level or EBL. If you are able to, help the family feel comfortable with
you being in their home and that their privacy is not being invaded. They will
be more likely to cooperate and provide information that could be helpful when
assessing the property. Make sure you remove your shoes or put on booties so
there is no chance of contamination from your feet. The first step of a risk
assessment is to gather detailed background information. If you are doing
the risk assessment because a child has an EBL, complete HUD Form 16.1. For all
other risk assessments, complete HUD Form 5.0. Listen carefully to statements and
comments made during the interview and use the information to ask additional
questions to get the most accurate picture you can of the property’s
history and the families use patterns. The goal is to get as much information
as possible about where children eat, sleep, and play, and any possible
non-paying sources of lead that could exist. For EBL cases, this could reveal
other locations outside of the home that will also require assessing. After the
interview, the next step is to complete a building condition survey and visual
assessment of the property. Walk slowly around the exterior of the property and
note any building components that are damaged, missing, or could contribute to
the failure of other components or substrate material. Record your
observations and comments on HUD Form 5.1. Look at the entire yard, paying close
attention to paint chips on the ground or in the drip line around the house and
any outbuildings. Look for areas of bare soil, especially where there is evidence
that children play or might play in the area. At the same time, take note of any
areas of deteriorated paint that will have to be tested later. It is a good
idea to take pictures of all four sides of the exterior of the house. These can
be helpful to review the actual number and location of
windows and roof lines. It is not required, but a picture of the house also
looks professional on the cover of your risk assessment report. Finish the
building condition survey and visual assessment by going through the entire
interior of the property. Document all signs of component or substrate failure.
Document all locations that show evidence of surface coating
deterioration, or friction or impact surfaces, or show chewing or bite marks.
Make sure to include the basement and the attic, if there is easy access to the
space. Basements are part of the living space and should be assessed. Pay close
attention to basement windows, painted floors and walls, and any other painted
storage cabinets or shelves. And the valuation at the plumbing system should
be done as well. Locate the water service lateral coming into the property and
verify it is not a lead service line. Lead is a soft metal and is easily
scratched with a sharp object. A magnet will help identify galvanized steel pipe
from lead pipes because a magnet will stick to galvanized steel. It will not
stick to lead. Assess the plumbing system after the water meter or pressure tank,
if the property has a private well. Look for solder joints and brass fittings in
the plumbing system. If you find these, note them in your field notes. If you
have concerns about lead in the drinking water based on this assessment,
corrective measures should be recommended. However, most lead exposure comes from sources other than water. Sketch out a floor plan of the house. You
can do the entire dwelling at once or you can draw a room or section of the
house at a time and put the pieces together in your office at a later time
to make a complete floor plan. You are required to show the location on a floor
plan of each dust wipe sample and paint chip sample you collect. Each location
should be labeled to match the corresponding sample ID number you
assign. The drawing must include the entire yard if a fence, detached garage,
or other types of outbuildings were tested, and must show the location of
soil samples if any are collected. Once the exterior and interior visual
assessment is completed and you have a floor plan drawing, proceed next with
collecting dust wipe samples. It is especially important to
collect dust wipe samples before any paint chip samples are collected to
avoid creating a lead hazard that may not have existed prior to you removing a
paint chip. Collect one wipe sample within 10 feet of a main entrance to the
outside. If you are assessing a multi-unit dwelling, remember to sample
common areas. Common areas like porches, shared entrances, hallways, and stairwells
are considered part of the dwelling space, and must be assessed. Being careful to touch the tape, carefully mark out the area to be sampled. Put on a clean pair
of gloves for each wipe sample. Make a sweeping S motion in two directions
being careful to not let your wipe go outside the tape. Fold the wipe dirty
side in after each pass. Although not required, HUD recommends following the
ASTM sampling standards, which required one additional pass around the outside.
Fold the wipe one more time, dirty side in, and place it inside the sample tube.
Label the tube with a unique sample ID number and record the location on your
floor plan and complete HUD Form 5.4a, showing the surface type and accurate
dimensions of the area sampled. Repeat this process in each room throughout the
property where children under six years of age may spend time. This includes a
basement floor and basement steps if children use the space. If you are not sure
if children use a room or space, you must assume they do, and collect samples from
that area. A plastic pre-measured dust wipe template may be used instead of
measuring in creating a sampling area using tape. If you use a template, it must
be taped securely in place so it does not move. It is critical to clean the
template thoroughly after every use to avoid cross-contamination from other
floors. Windows present special concerns when wipe sampling. To avoid your wipe
touching the window sash and creating possible cross contamination,
open the window slightly before sampling. Creating as large of a sample area as
possible will help avoid getting a high reporting limit value in your lab
results. Wear a new pair of gloves for each sill. Wipe first in one direction, fold the wipe dirty side in, then wipe back in
the opposite direction. Fold the dirty side in again, then place the wipe inside the sample tube. Make sure the wipe only touches the
surface of the sill and does not touch the inside of the window trow along the
front edge of the windowsill or the sash. Measure the area after collecting the
wipe sample to avoid contaminating the area. Record this information. Make sure
you measure accurately. Being off by as little as one-eighth of an inch can
change your result enough to give a result that is below the hazard standard
when, if measured accurately, the cheer result would have been above the
standard. When the assessment is done to investigate a lead-poisoned child, dust
wipes may be collected from any surface you suspect may have lead. When the surface has an irregular shape, it cannot be measured accurately. In these situations,
the measurement section on your chain of custody is left blank and the lab will
report total lead on the wipe. If any lead is detected, it would be a possible
source and need further evaluation. Remember that the US Food and Drug
Administration (FDA) sets the allowable level of lead in food, candy, powders, and
cosmetics. Refer to current FDA regulations for these limits. When
investigating because of a lead-poisoned child, pay close attention to bathtubs,
sinks, or other household fixtures that have porcelain or enamel glazed finish.
This glazing may contain high levels of lead and could be a possible lead hazard,
especially if the glazing is chipped, scratched, or worn. Neither the Department
of Housing and Urban Development nor the Wisconsin Department of Health Services
have a set hazard standard for glazing, because it is not considered a surface
coating. For porcelain or enamel glazed surfaces, it is recommended to use the
most protective standard, which is the allowable lead level set by the Consumer
Product Safety Commission for children’s products.
For Quality Assurance, one field blank is required for each dwelling tested. To
prepare a blank sample, put on a clean pair of gloves and fold a new, unused
wipe to look like other wipes you collected. Place it into a sample tube
and label with a sample ID number. This ID number should correspond to an
anonymous location you assign on the chain of custody. It should only be
recorded as a blank in your personal field notes. Do not let the lab know it’s
a blank. If the lab result of your field blank is above five micrograms, it
indicates contamination from your supplies and all of your sample results
are invalid. It is not recommended to use a correction value to recalculate the
results. New dust wipe samples will need to be collected. Using an x-ray
fluorescence analyzer, or XRF, for risk assessments is the most efficient method
of testing paint or other coated surfaces. Only a certified lead risk
assessor is allowed to operate an XRF. Lead hazard investigators may not use an
XRF analyzer, because they have not completed their required radiation
safety training. Follow the manufacturer’s guidelines to check the
instrument’s calibration before taking any readings with the XRF analyzer. Then
proceed to take readings on every surface or testing combination in every
room equivalent that has deteriorated paint, is a friction or impact surface, or
shows signs of chewing. You do not have to test surfaces that are not deteriorated.
Take readings on areas where the paint is the thickest, making sure to get all
layers to represent the complete paint history. Remember that color is not an
accurate predictor of paint history. If you get a positive reading indicating
the presence of lead-based paint, you are allowed to conclude that all like
surfaces, or like testing combinations within that room equivalent, are also lead-based paint. If you get a negative reading, it is only representative of
that single surface or testing combination. Continue to test all other
like surfaces and testing combinations in each room equivalent with
deteriorated paint. You may not presume lead-based paint is
not present on a surface. Paint chip samples are required to verify all
inconclusive readings from an XRF, or you must presume that there is lead-based
paint. Document each individual XRF reading in your field notes. Because a
large number of readings may be taken in a thorough risk assessment, the location
of each reading is not marked on the floor plan. Instead, for each XRF reading,
record the room equivalent component room side substrate and the reading
result in milligrams per square centimeter. While not required, it is
helpful to also note the type of surface deterioration. For example, peeling paint,
chipping paint, if it is an impact or friction surface, or if a painted surface
shows evidence of chewing. HUD does not provide a form to record XRF readings, so
it is recommended that you create your own method for recording this
information in the field. Using abbreviations and codes will make
recording much faster and easier. When the risk assessment is part of an EBL
investigation, you may also test other items like furniture, pottery, and toys.
Caution must be used when testing these types of items, because children’s
furniture, toys, and jewelry have limits for lead set by the Consumer Product
Safety Commission in parts per million. Only an XRF that is designed to give a
reading in parts per million can be used in these situations. Readings
and milligrams per square centimeter cannot be converted to parts per million.
If any value other than zero is shown, the item should be tested by a more
accurate means of analysis. Using an XRF on bath tubs and sinks can detect lead
in the glaze finish, indicating the need to follow up with dust wipe sampling
covered earlier in this video. Hazard investigators are allowed to
conduct risk assessments in Wisconsin, but are not allowed to operate an XRF. As
mentioned earlier, paint chips are intended primarily to verify an
inconclusive reading from an XRF or to test paint in dwellings with very
limited deterioration. If there are a large number of locations that will need
to be tested, paint chip sampling is not recommended.
When selecting a location to take a paint chip sample, always look for areas
that are the thickest and give complete paint history of that component. Many
times, this may be on the edges, top, or bottom of a component. These areas are
also less visible, since paint chip sampling is destructive to the surface
coating. This video is not intended to meet any OSHA training requirements.
Follow your agency policy for using personal protective equipment. Place an
unused, 4′ by 4′ plastic containment sheet on the floor under the
location to be sampled. Wearing new gloves, mark out the size of the chip to
be removed. Using a 1″ chisel will eliminate the need to measure using a
ruler. Most labs want paint chips that are approximately four square inches in
size. This can be achieved by taking a 2″ x 2″ sample or a 1″ x 4″ sample. Check with your lab for size and weight requirements of paint chip
samples. Using a heat gun operated at less than 1,100 degrees Fahrenheit works
the best for removing all of the paint layers with little effort. If you do not
have a heat gun or are not able to use one in a particular location, score the
surface several times in two different directions to form very small squares
that can be removed. Using your chisel upside down helps to control the amount
of substrate that is removed. Record the location of each paint chip sample on
the floor plan and complete HUD Form 5.3. If there are a lot of paint layers that
you suspect are not lead-based paint or if substrate material is collected along
with paint, request that the laboratory report the results in milligrams per
square centimeters. This is the most accurate method of reporting, but
requires the size of your chip sample to be accurate within 1/16 of an inch of
the measurement you put on your chain of custody. Under no circumstances should
paint chips be picked up from the bottom of a window trough or from the ground and
used to identify a component as having lead-based paint. Paint chip samples that are not collected following the approved protocol are not
valid samples and the results cannot be used. Because you may have created a
hazard by collecting a paint chip that disturbs lead-based paint in the process,
some measures should be taken to protect the location until the lab results are
reported. This could be placing a duct-tape patch over the location or
making sure you or the property owner coat the location with shellac or latex
paint. Take pictures of each area of deterioration for your report. Pictures
can be helpful to refresh your memory if you have any question about the
deterioration and severity of the hazard when writing your risk assessment report.
It is not required, but it is a good practice to include these photos as an
attachment to your report. Repeat the same process for the exterior, testing
all deteriorated paint and photographing those areas. Make sure to assess all
garages, sheds, outbuildings, or painted fences. The entire property must be
assessed. If there are any areas or room equivalents that you do not assess, you
must state this and the reason why they were not assessed in your risk
assessment report. If areas of bare soil were identified during your visual
assessment, collect one composite soil sample from each play area you
identified, and one composite sample from other areas of bare soil you found.
Composite soil samples are made up of three to ten small sub samples of the
top 5/8 inch of soil. These sub samples should be from randomly selected
locations within the area of bare soil. If the family indicated during the
questionnaire interview that they eat food grown in a garden, a soil sample
should also be collected from the garden. Review the protocol for sampling gardens
in the HUD guidelines. The process for sampling garden soil is different from
sampling bare soil in the yard. Complete HUD Form 5.5 and record the location of
soil samples collected on a sketch of the entire property that shows the house,
any outbuildings, fences, or other structures. After you have
assessed the entire dwelling and property, make sure all of your garbage,
such as tape, used gloves, wet wipes, and any other trash you generated is
collected and brought with you for disposal at your office.
Wisconsin Administrative Code DHS 163.14 9 K lists the 18 required items
that must be included in your final risk assessment report. Using the risk
assessment report template created by DHS will save you time and ensure all
required information is included in your report. Contact Jeff Raiche-Gill for a copy
of the master template. DHS 163 requires risk assessors to deliver the final
report to the property owner within 10 working days after receiving the
laboratory results. A large part of the report can be completed without the lab
results. It is good practice to write as much of the report as possible as soon
as you return to your office. It is especially important to complete your
report in a timely manner when there is a child in the property with an
elevated blood lead level.

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