Lead contamination and poisoning used to be extremely common, considering lead was frequently used in household items, cosmetics, and even wine. Although we know better now, after decades of studies and tests done by doctors and scientists, laws all over the world have prevented lead from being used in a way that’s harmful to human health. However, lead contamination still happens frequently enough that the CDC and EPA consistently release warnings. You may already be aware that old paint may contain lead, but there are a variety of unexpected lead sources that can lead to contamination and require professional testing to ensure safety.
Lead is a naturally-occurring constituent of earth’s crust. Humans have been using lead since the Bronze age, and consequently, in modern times it is one of the best-studied substances. Lead poisoning happens when a human is exposed to lead materials and suffers negative health consequences. Too much lead in the environment can lead to anything from digestive issues to developmental disorders in children. The EPA has set many laws that property owners must abide by in order to prevent lead poisoning. However, there have been a few famous cases that made it into the history books. Here are history’s biggest lead contamination cases.
Lead is a metal that is poisonous to humans. Lead was commonly used in paint, gasoline, and plumbing materials and can still be found in batteries, pipes, solder, pottery, roofing materials, and even some cosmetics. This material can be present in paint, dust, water, and even the air.
Commercial spaces often require building managers to perform air sampling at least once a year to check for safety. It’s vital that samples are taken properly and sent to a trustworthy lab, like SanAir Technologies Laboratory. Viable air sampling can detect a number of harmful contaminants in the air, like bacteria, fungi, and pollen. You likely have to test your space’s air quality at least once a year, or whenever you suspect an environmental hazard.
The toxic black mold that you’re used to hearing about actually refers specifically to the “Stachybotrys” bacteria. Black mold is easily confused with many other types of mold that can appear in dark, damp areas. While all mold is harmful to human health, black mold is often thought of as one of the worst. All buildings and commercial properties should be inspected for black mold regularly. Though the EPA has no federal guidelines on how often you should check for mold, your insurance company will likely require testing for any suspicious-looking dark spots. For health and safety reasons, you should always get laboratory testing done if you suspect black mold on the property.