September 2, 1977


Release # 77-096

WASHINGI'ON, D.C. (Sept. 2) -- The U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission (CPSC) has culminated a major regulatory proceeding by issuing a final ban on lead-containing paint and on toys and furniture coated with such paint. This action was taken to reduce the risk of lead poisoning in children who may ingest paint chips or peelings.

Until now, the maximum level of lead allowed in consumer paints has been 0.5 percent. CPSC has lowered this amount to 0.06 percent, a level conforming with the maximum permissible under the Lead-Based Paint Poisoning Prevention Act. This Act, administered primarily by the Department of Housing and Urban Development, prohibits application of lead-based paint to housing constructed or rehabilitated with federal assistance.

Exempted from the new ban are mirrors backed with lead-containing paint which are part of articles of furniture, as well as artists' paints and related materials. Also exempted, provided they bear specified cautionary labeling, are certain agricultural and industrial coatings, touch-up coatings for appliances and lawn and garden equipment, graphic arts coatings, and certain coatings for powered model aircraft.

This ban under the Consumer Product Safety Act will take effect 180 days after publication September 1 in the Federal Register and will apply to products manufactured on and after that date.