History of Lead in property
Our next project was a 5-storey residential building built in mid 1800’s. with clay brick walls and a pitched roof. We were instructed to carry out a lead survey to the whole of the building and the roof. The purpose of the Lead (Pb) survey was to locate and identify the presence of any Lead (Pb) containing materials within all reasonably accessible areas.
Sampling and Lead(Pb) survey strategy
The Lead (Pb) survey was conducted by means of visual inspection also equipment called The NITON XL2 980 GOLDD Spectrum Analyzer Lead Detector was used in order to collect X-Ray Fluorescence (XRF) readings. Additionally, physical samples were taken using a variety of tools including a chisel, sharp knife or screwdriver, where appropriate. In all cases of sampling, care was taken to ensure that the samples were representative of the material involved and that a sufficient quantity of material was sampled.
Extent of Lead content in materials
The paint in all the rooms located on the lower ground floor, ground floor, first floor and second floors were found to be in a very poor condition and the risk of exposure was significant. The offending areas in these rooms were in the form of paint located on the window frames, ceiling beams, walls and skirting boards. We recommended that this paint was to be removed so it could no longer pose any threat to the health of operatives/site visitors. The rooms on the third floor were also found to have a significant risk of exposure as lead based paint in a good condition was located around the windows. Although in good condition, we recommended that these hazards were removed in order to reduce the risk of exposure. Work with such materials should be carried out under controlled conditions with operatives equipped with appropriate respiratory and personal protective equipment.