If you or a family member have been exposed to lead poisoning, contact New York City attorneys Ronemus & Vilensky, specialists in lead paint exposure cases. Childhood lead poisoning can damage the brain and nervous system.
What Is Lead Poisoning?
Lead poisoning, according to the Mayo Clinic, occurs when lead accumulates in the body over time, often months or years. Even trace amounts of lead can be hazardous to one’s health. Children under the age of six are especially vulnerable to lead poisoning, which can have serious consequences for their mental and physical development. Lead poisoning can be fatal at high concentrations.
How Do You Get Lead Poisoning?
Lead-based paint, lead paint chips, and lead-contaminated dust in older buildings are common causes of childhood lead poisoning. Other sources of contamination include contaminated air, water, and soil. Adults who work with batteries, renovate homes, or work in auto repair shops may also be exposed to lead.
According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), young children can be indirectly exposed to lead when they put lead-containing objects in their mouth, such as toys, trinkets, or their fingers, as part of their normal development. Contact with paint chips and dust from lead paint in buildings and homes that may have landed on windowsills, the floor, toys, trinkets, or their fingers can expose children to lead.
However, the most common sources of lead exposure for children are swallowing house dust or soil contaminated with lead paint. Children can be exposed to lead if they ingest chipped lead paint.
Additionally, lead, according to the CDC, can be scattered when paint is disturbed during the following:
- Building destruction or remodeling
- Paint removal
- Preparation of surfaces for repainting
What Are the Symptoms of Lead Paint Exposure?
Signs and symptoms of children with elevated blood lead levels include:
- Developmental delay
- Learning difficulties
- Loss of appetite
- Weight loss
- Sluggishness and fatigue
- Abdominal pain
- Hearing loss
- Eating things, such as paint chips, that aren’t food
The Effects of Lead Poisoning and Lead Hazards
More than two million people suffer from the effects of lead poisoning which, even through low levels of exposure, result in serious developmental, behavioral, neurological, and gastrointestinal health problems, particularly in developing fetuses and young children. Lead affects the body in many ways:
Babies exposed to lead before birth might:
- Be born prematurely
- Have lower birth weight
- Have slowed growth
Young children exposed to lead based paint hazards can subjected to well-documented adverse effects such as:
- Damage to the brain and nervous system
- Slowed growth and development
- Learning and behavior problems
- Hearing and speech problems
This, according to the CDC, can cause:
- Lower IQ
- Decreased ability to pay attention
- Under-performance in school
Lead poisoning symptoms in adults
Although children are primarily at risk, lead poisoning is also dangerous for adults. Signs and symptoms in adults might include:
- High blood pressure
- Joint and muscle pain
- Difficulties with memory or concentration
- Abdominal pain
- Mood disorders
- Reduced sperm count and abnormal sperm
- Miscarriage, stillbirth or premature birth in pregnant women
Multi-Family Housing and Lead-Based Paint: The Law
The Lead-Based Paint Disclosure Rule (Section 1018 of Title X) under the federal government requires potential buyers and renters of housing built prior to 1978 to receive certain information about lead and lead hazards in the residence prior to becoming obligated to buy or rent, according to the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA). Failure to disclose this information may pose severe consequences for the property owner or landlord.
New York City Law and Lead Paint Hazards
Local Law 1 of 2004, and its amendments, require landlords in New York City to identify and remediate lead-based paint hazards in apartments with young children, using trained workers and safe work practices.
Lead-based paint hazards are presumed to exist in dwelling units and common areas if any of the following conditions exist:
The building was constructed prior to January 1, 1960; the building contains tenant-occupied rental apartments; and the dwelling unit houses a child under the age of six.
Since 2004, under New York law, Local Law 1 has applied to three or more-unit residential buildings. All of Local Law 1 of 2004 applies to tenant-occupied, one- and two-unit buildings effective February 2021. This basically means unless a property owner has tested the painted surfaces and keeps records of that testing, they must assume the paint is lead-based paint and follow the law’s instructions for doing any work that could disturb a lead-based paint surface. For example, scraping off old paint is hazardous since it releases into the air via paint dust.
Talk to NYC Lead Paint Poisoning Attorneys
If you or your children suffer from neurological, behavioral or gastrointestinal problems and suspect that these may be the result of exposure to lead and lead paint dust, contact Ronemus & Vilensky and speak to a qualified and caring personal injury lawyer who will determine the best course of action. Our experienced lead poisoning lawyer will provide you with a free consultation to determine your best course of action.
Ronemus & Vilensky, New York City personal injury attorneys, have recovered millions of dollars in damages for their clients with lead poisoning to receive full and fair compensation including to cover the loss of income, pain and suffering, medical bills, and more. Chips of paint from walls and ceilings and lead dust may harm very young children due to its lead content. Lead poisoning is a serious thing and should not be ignored. If you or a loved one is injured due to lead exposure, contact a reputable NYC lead exposure injury lawyer for legal representation right away.