Ritchie Enterprises Inc., of Sullivan,
Mo., to Pay $30,000 for Failure to Use Lead
Safe Work Practices and Notify Homeowners of
(Lenexa, Kan., Oct. 23, 2013) - Ritchie Enterprises
Inc., a Sullivan, Mo., company doing business
as PuroClean Emergency Restoration Services,
has agreed to pay a $30,000 civil penalty to
settle allegations that it failed to use proper
lead-safe work practices during the restoration
of a home built in 1891 near New Haven, Mo.,
in violation of the Renovation, Repair, and
Painting Rule (RRP).
Federal lead-based paint regulations exempt
emergency repair work in some cases, but Ritchie
Enterprises continued working on the house long
after the emergency had passed without complying
with the RRP Rule.
According to an administrative consent agreement
and final order filed by EPA Region 7 in Lenexa,
Kan., Ritchie Enterprises was legally required
to use proper lead-safe work practices during
the renovation and provide owners and occupants
of the properties with an EPA-approved lead
hazard information pamphlet, known as the Renovate
Right pamphlet, before starting renovations
at the properties.
The Renovate Right pamphlet helps homeowners
and tenants understand the risks of lead-based
paint, and how best to minimize these risks
to protect themselves and their families. Ritchie
Enterprises did not provide this pamphlet, nor
did Ritchie Enterprises maintain records of
work practices for this renovation and at least
two other renovations on pre-1978 homes in Mineral
Point and Sullivan, Mo.
A company employee also used a high-speed belt
sander without a HEPA exhaust attachment to
remove lead-based paint. The use of high-speed
machines to remove paint or other surface coatings
is prohibited by regulations unless the machine
is equipped with a HEPA attachment to collect
dust and debris which may contain lead.
EPA became involved in this case a result of
a complaint from the homeowner. The company
was not a certified RRP contractor at the time
of the work.
The RRP Rule requires that contractors that
work on pre-1978 dwellings and child-occupied
facilities are trained and certified to use
lead-safe work practices. This ensures that
common renovation and repair activities like
sanding, cutting and replacing windows minimize
the creation and dispersion of dangerous lead
dust. EPA finalized the RRP Rule in 2008 and
the rule took effect on April 22, 2010.
This enforcement action addresses RRP Rule violations
that could result in harm to human health. Lead
exposure can cause a range of adverse health
effects, from behavioral disorders and learning
disabilities to seizures and death, putting
young children at the greatest risk because
their nervous systems are still developing.