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Working Safely With Lead Paint

Lead Paint is Dangerous! Watch a video on the risks of lead paint to the Australian community, and what the responsibilities of the painter are:

More Info

How to perform a lead paint laboratory test sample:

How to perform a lead paint test using a field test:

Lead Paint Audit

Protection From Lead Paint Hazards

Lead Paint Abatement

Watch this video to see how to perform lead paint abatement using dry sanding, chemical stripping and wet sanding.

CPCCPD3031 Work safely with lead-painted surfaces in the painting industry

For more great resources, learner guides and industry validated assessment tools for CPCCPD3031 Work safely with lead-painted surfaces in the painting industry, please contact the National Painting and Decorating Institute

Working safely with lead paint is crucial to protect both workers and the environment from the harmful effects of lead exposure. In Australia, there are stringent standards and regulations in place to ensure the safe handling, removal, and disposal of lead paint. Adhering to these standards is essential to prevent lead poisoning and maintain a healthy work environment. This article will discuss the key guidelines outlined in Australian standards for working safely with lead paint.

Understanding the Risks:

Lead is a toxic substance that can cause serious health problems when ingested or inhaled. Lead poisoning can lead to neurological damage, developmental delays, and other health issues, particularly in children and pregnant women. Lead paint, commonly used in older buildings, poses a significant risk of exposure during renovation, demolition, or maintenance activities. It's essential to recognise the hazards associated with lead paint and take appropriate precautions to minimise exposure.

Australian Standards and Regulations:

In Australia, the safe handling of lead paint is governed by various regulations and standards, including:

  1. Work Health and Safety (WHS) Regulations: These regulations outline the legal obligations for employers and workers to ensure a safe workplace environment. They include provisions specifically addressing the management of hazardous substances such as lead.

  2. Australian/New Zealand Standard AS/NZS 4361.2:2017 - Guide to Lead Paint Management: This standard provides comprehensive guidance on managing lead paint hazards in various settings, including residential, commercial, and industrial buildings. It covers topics such as risk assessment, control measures, and safe work practices.

  3. Code of Practice for the Management and Control of Lead at Work: This code of practice, issued by Safe Work Australia, provides practical guidance for employers and workers on managing lead exposure in the workplace. It outlines strategies for risk assessment, exposure control, and health monitoring.

Safe Work Practices:

To comply with Australian standards and regulations, organisations and individuals working with lead paint must follow a set of safe work practices:

  1. Risk Assessment: Before starting work, conduct a thorough risk assessment to identify potential lead hazards. Assess the condition of painted surfaces, the likelihood of lead dust generation, and the extent of exposure risks.

  2. Control Measures: Implement appropriate control measures to minimise lead exposure. This may include using containment measures such as plastic sheeting and negative air pressure systems to prevent the spread of lead dust, as well as providing personal protective equipment (PPE) such as respirators, coveralls, and gloves.

  3. Work Practices: Follow safe work practices to reduce the risk of lead exposure. This includes using wet methods (e.g., wet scraping or sanding) to minimise dust generation, avoiding dry sweeping or sanding, and cleaning up thoroughly using HEPA vacuums and wet wipes.

  4. Training and Education: Ensure that workers receive adequate training and education on lead paint hazards and safe work practices. Training should cover topics such as lead awareness, proper use of PPE, and emergency procedures in case of exposure.

  5. Health Monitoring: Implement a health monitoring program to monitor workers' lead exposure levels and detect any signs of lead poisoning early. This may involve regular blood lead testing and medical surveillance for workers involved in high-risk activities.

  6. Environmental Controls: Implement measures to control lead contamination in the environment, such as proper waste disposal procedures and containment of lead-contaminated materials. Dispose of lead waste in accordance with local regulations and guidelines.

  7. Documentation and Record Keeping: Maintain detailed records of lead risk assessments, control measures implemented, worker training and health monitoring records, and any incidents or exposures. This documentation is essential for compliance and monitoring purposes.

For comprehensive training in lead paint please enrol in our lead paint courses:

Lead Paint Management Course

This course is for supervisors of residential projects involving lead paint


Lead Paint Awareness Course

This course is a basic overview for anyone working on substrates with lead paint.


Hazardous Paint Management - Responsible Person

This course is for anyone managing an industrial or maintenance project on infrastructure where hazardous paints may be present


CPCCPD3031 Work safely with lead-painted surfaces in the painting industry

This qualification is for painters who remove lead paint and repaint lead-painted surfaces