“Ask Kari” is a monthly, Question & Answer feature from Kari Negri. Kari has two decades of property management experience, is a featured speaker at many industry trade shows, such as AAGLA’s annual trade show, and is the CEO of SKY Properties, Inc. in Los Angeles.
This month, we have a special RRP certification guest article from veteran Property Supervisor Carmen Zelaya. Besides being a long-time Property Supervisor of a large portfolio, Carmen is lead and mold certified and an LAPD Certified Property Manager – Valley Bureau Certified. So she’s well qualified to offer building owners guidance in this area for sure! Carmen asks, “Are your vendors RRP Certified?”
What is RRP certification?
Many property owners and property managers are unaware of the EPA’s Lead Renovation, Repair and Painting Rule (RRP Rule). This rule requires that contractors and workmen performing renovation, repair, and painting projects that may possibly disturb lead-based paint in homes, schools and multi-family dwellings built before 1978 have certification which ensures they are trained to follow lead-safe work practices and precautions.
In order to become an EPA Certified Renovator, you are required to take an 8-hour RRP “Lead Safe Work Practices” class from an EPA accredited training provider. The initial certification is good for five (5) years. To “renew” contractors must take a 4-hour RRP refresher class before their initial certification expires.
As a property manager, I make sure all my maintenance workers and vendors have this certification and always follow up to make sure it stays current. The fines for not taking these precautions can be up to $37,500 per day!
The reason this RRP Rule is so important is because when lead paint is in any way disturbed (for example through sanding, scraping, etc.), tiny particles of lead are released and create a lead-containing dust. When inhaled / ingested into the body, this “dust” can have a serious impact on your health.
According to the EPA, lead can cause a long list of health problems, including kidney disease, high blood pressure, and birth defects. Lead has also been known to cause developmental issues in children and can even lead to depression and aggressive behavior. Experts say lead poisoning has doubled the number of children requiring special education services. Even small amounts of lead can be potentially bad for anyone exposed to it.
Here are a few instances of repairmen needing the RRP certification:
A maintenance man doing a drywall repair, an A/C vendor who is cutting into a wall to install an A/C, A plumber who has to repair plumbing behind a wall, and an electrician who is repairing wiring inside a ceiling; essentially anyone who will be cutting into a wall and /or disturbing the paint layers. This certification does not only apply to painters.
Recently, there has been a lot of publicity about toys and other imported household products containing lead. The problems caused by these products are nothing compared to the number of people harmed when contractors disturb old paint in pre-1978 buildings without taking the required precautions.
My advice for owners of pre-1978 properties is to make sure that anyone who does any repairs or paint work on your property have this certification! It is very easy to obtain through the EPA’s website: www.leadcertificationca.com
As always, please remember, I am not an attorney. Seek clarification through your attorney. All articles are simply an opinion. Stay in touch at www.GetSky.net
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