Lead-free clean-up

Roger Lewis of the Saint Louis University School of Public Health and his colleagues have demonstrated that everyday household detergents can remove lead-contaminated dust from household surfaces just as effectively as more expensive high-phosphate detergents and lead-specific cleaning products. Of the approximately 100 million housing units in the United States, about 24 million have significant levels of lead in dust, soil and paint, according to the US Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD). The US Government guidelines recommend lead-specific cleaning detergents for removal of such lead from hard surfaces, such as floors and window areas, but Lewis' results reported in a forthcoming issue of Environmental Science & Technology, suggest that they may be unnecessary.