Asbestos and lead pose health risks, and they may be found in buildings and other structures. Because of this, the Health Department and the Environmental Protection Agency have specific requirements for the maintenance, renovation and demolition of buildings and other structures.
Asbestos-containing materials (ACMs) are only dangerous when they are disturbed or handled incorrectly. If ACMs are not handled properly, asbestos particles can be breathed in. Even a small amount of ACM can cause health effects.
Lead-based paint becomes a hazard when it is disturbed. This can be from chipping and peeling paint, when painted surfaces rub together, or when the paint is not properly sanded, scraped or burned. If lead-based paint is not handled properly, lead dust can be breathed in or swallowed by workers and by people, especially children, who use the building or other structure.
By law, your landlord is required to do the following:
- Before a renovation, an inspection must be done to identify possible asbestos-containing materials.
- Hire a Vermont-licensed asbestos inspector to conduct the inspection.
- Hire a Vermont-licensed abatement contractor for any asbestos repair or abatement.
If you are renting a property that was built before 1978, your landlord or property manager is required to make sure lead paint is in good condition so that it does not cause lead poisoning.
Under Vermont law, only licensed contractors are allowed to perform asbestos abatement activities and must follow the regulations regarding the handling and disposing of asbestos-containing materials.
Under Vermont law, contractors and landlords are required to use lead-safe work practices.
If you want to know whether there are asbestos-containing materials in a home, building, structure or material, hire a Vermont-licensed asbestos inspector to conduct an inspection.
If you want to know whether lead-based paint is on a home, building or other structure, hire a Vermont-certified lead inspector or risk assessor to conduct a lead inspection or risk assessment. A lead inspection determines the presence or absence of lead-based paint on painted or coated surfaces. A risk assessment identifies lead hazards from deteriorated paint, dust and bare soil, and ways to control the lead hazards.
Test kits for lead in drinking water can be purchased from the Health Department Laboratory. Find out more about testing for lead in drinking water