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Rock On
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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Heads Up Exterior Paintingcos From Boston To R.I.

Word is the Massachusetts DEP will be doing drive-bys of exterior painting projects this spring
Targeted area includes the South Shore, along the Cape out to P-Town, and the South Coast to R.I.
They will be checking to make sure all proper environmental procedures are being followed
They will be testing for lead in the paint chips and in/on the ground, shrubs, pool water....
The "unofficial" word from this DEP official is the first sweep will be warnings
Then another sweep with all the hefty fines (and prosecution if appropriate)

Just letting you all know....
 

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....
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Sure glad Pa. wasn't mentioned, wouldn't want those guys pulling their guns out around here.:2guns:
 

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Thanks for the warning. I'll pass it on to my friends here in the Bay State. The DEP will fine some hardworking, small contractor for a few chips in the azealas and put him out of business.

Maybe they will bring OSHA along for a few citations as well

Mndrk
 

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This is absolutely ridiculous - painters have been scraping lead paint off of homes in New England for like forever. All those years the DEP could have been there to enforce strict rules - and they didn't. This is crazy - lead has been out of paint for over 40 years - most companies didn't wait for the ban in '77. The problem is self rectifying - we scrape and throw away ant it's goine. You already can't make any money it seems anymore with exterior painting. If anything they should fine the homeowner - for acting as the G.C. and hiring a painting sub-contracting firm. It should be the G.C.'s responsibility as to lead abatement. Make the homeowners accountable! Or make it a law a homeowner can only hire a painting company that has a contracting license.
 

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Rock On
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Discussion Starter · #7 ·
Actually plain, that's kinda what happened
And I think the catalyst for the govt. to "do something" was from a public outcry

I think it was the Swimming Pool Incident (S.E. Mass.)
The H/O had the house "stripped"
It was done using grinders
The flakes blew into the neighbor's pool
The neighbor freaked
The neighbor had the pool drained and the flakes tested
They were lead
The ground and shrubs were tested
They had lead
They all had to be removed...the shrubs...and the ground
(a certain amount of topsoil must be removed)
The PaintCo went out of business
The neighbors insurance had to sue somebody
They sued the H/O (that had the house stripped)
The public bitched the Gov't "should have done something"
Now they are

It is a law (in any state I've worked in or know of) that a H/O can only hire a certified lead abatement company for lead abatement
But they can still try and get a company that is un-ethical or un-knowledgeable to strip lead paint
 

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It may be the law, but 100% of the homes on the northshore built before 1950 has lead - and 100% of those homes have had painters scrape those homes on several occasions since the 50's. The only thing I have ever heard - is that some towns you will get in trouble for grinding. I lost this job to a paint company, who are all russians, and they ground down the whole house down to bare wood - you should have seen the dust cloud everyday. And it was on a busy road.

Oh well - I guess people will just 'cover' up their homes with vinyl from now on.
 

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I do like the part about how people bitched the government should have done something. When the people are the ones in the first place chiseling down contractors forcing them to work for peanuts. If I 'ethically' went around and gave lead abatement type pricing - I'd get 0% bites!

I am all for this - if it's really true, I will get the certification - but me thinks folks will just get their place vinyl'd or perhaps resided.
 

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We got the eyeball by environmental agents over 2yrs ago when a prep crew was working on a high profile old building downtown.
Everything was well tarped to collect and dispose of chips suitably.
Crew was using scrapers and power sanders. w dust masks..
Eco agents said they had a report of sandblasting... we had not.
I DO know the fines are VERY big.
 

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In our area (Cleveland) some cities (Lakewood, Shaker, University Heights) have local ordinances in regards to exterior prep work on lead paint. The more severe ordinances only allow for scraping and hand sanding with collection of the chips with tarps. No power sanding, grinding, blasting or even pressure washing! I have had some contractors tell me that the city inspector has threatened to shut them down if they continued power washing. The main concern of these cities is getting lead in the runoff and groundwater.

The common practice is to scrape and collect, prime with a high build primer like Peel Bond to level a bit and topcoat. Peel Bond is being used to reduce the amount of scraping which works pretty well.
 

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Rock On
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Discussion Starter · #13 ·
First Day Of Spring

First Day Of Spring
...and it was snowing yesterday
But I did want to bump this
 

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Good

I had a bid for a church last year for a telecommunications company that wanted to place a cell tower up on the bell tower. The town would not approve of the plan unless the cell provider paid to have the church re-painted. The church was broke and hadn't had a paint job in 50-60 years. Guess what....lead paint! And peeling badly. It was sitting on a hill close to the down town area with a school in spitting distance and homes with kids all around. The rep from the tele co. told me to keep the bid under 125k and it was mine....After doing a little research with the town and the state I found out that the town BOH was keeping a close eye on the project to make sure no corners would be cut.....So I get estimates from some staging companies to stage, tarp, and a clean air system...prices from 75 - 110k ..ok fine...now we need a "clean" area for wash up...and breaks.... cant have guys munching on their tuna subs with lead on their hands ....lets just add another 20k to that ...various pricing...... HEPA filter sanders, masks... clean up procedures...disposal...a mess ...dont forget the labor and materials .... we were looking at over 300k for this job .... they laughed at me ...better be safe than sorry ...all You need is a nice lawsuit and a investigative reporter on your site because some kid ate a lead paint chip or the dust from sanding drifted 1/2 mile and they are sick ........sometimes the best business is knowing when to walk away.
 

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I'm sure if some epa type tested for lead - he'd find plenty of it in the soil surrounding that peeling mess - so if some painter scrapes the place down - how does it make it worse? Even pressure washing - what's the difference between that and melting snows and rain hitting that soil all year?
 

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PinheadsUnite
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Couple of lead stories for your perusal.

Bob "little guy" Reich (former Clinton cabinet member) wanted to grow tomatoes by the side of his house in Camb (actually, wife Claire wanted to). They had the soil tested, and was told that the lead content of the soil would make the tomatoes absolutely hazardous to their then young child. (this was circa 1980). This was from decades, nay centuries, of scraping paint.

In the mid 80's after burning and scraping OLD shutters, me and my partner had our blood tested. We wuz VERY high (the lead count in our blood was also up there :whistling2: ) . It was not a fun time. I bought a supplied-air respirator ($2G in the mid-80's) and we slowly got our blood levels down. My partner definitely had a personality shift while elevated.

Last summer I was on Manchester Road, Brookline (High density residential) installing some paper in a powder room and some furriners were grinding and scraping the front porch. That sweet smell of lead was EVERYWHERE. The HO had two YOUNG kids. When I got home, I called the Brookline BOH. They were VERY interested.

Make no doubt about it, the dangers of lead are real. Too many people poo poo the dangers and do not take the correct precautions.

I won't comment on the DEP's planned action, But I do believe something HAS to be done. Too many painting contractors get too much sh!t from too many HO's about the cost. Personally, I would rather not do the job, than expose myself to lead litigation.

-Bill
 

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What I don't like - it's the very homeowner in the very first place that have chiseled down contractors in general to the point, where you have to run your business illegaly in order to stay in business - I've branched out into other businesses in order to stay alive - but in all fairness a typical New Englander Victorian style home with 19 layers of paint most of 'em lead, 1/8" thick in lots of places really requires 400-500 man hours of labor from careful setup to lead abatement practices and osha required safety precautions. All this would cost the 'honest' contractor a solid 25-30 grand in order to be profitable with well paid qualified help - and tons of south of the border teams that will do it for 6 g's. How do you compete? And what right do homeowners now have to complain about elevated lead levels in their childrens' blood? You can't have your cake and eat it too. Either we become a nation of qualified professional contractors that do it the legit way and get paid honestly for our work - and crack down on all the lowballing illegal scum - or we allow these 'aliens' in, and do the work supposedly politicians say nobody else wants to do, for cheap and ignore all those lead 'dust' storms I see them creating.
 

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PinheadsUnite
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You said a mouthful PP.

Perhaps (we can only hope) that these new DEP drive-bys will help flush out (as in FLUSH down the toilet) those furriners who are not playing by the rules. HOPEFULLY this will drive the point home to the HO's that there ain't no more scumbags available to take the short cuts. HOPEFULLY this will level the playing field so that those who would really PREFER to do it right, will be able to do so and still make a living.

I do empathise with the HO's,I mean who has that kind of money? Many do not realize they are protecting their largest investment. And as we know, in this part of the country, "CHEAP" is a revered lifestyle.

They also like safe and green. Out of one side of their mouths they scream "there oughta be a law" but outa the other they scream about govmt interference.

And guess who is caught in the middle? You and me, brother !
 
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