Small town lead levels: A case study from the homes of pre-schoolers in Mt. Pleasant, Michigan

Mark A. Francek, Bradley Makimaa, Vicki Pan, J. H. Hanko

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

9 Scopus citations

Abstract

This study evaluates the relationship between household Pb levels and four variables (home age, distance to road, traffic volume adjacent to the home, and the amount of exposed soil) for 42 homes in a small city. As a whole, Pb levels for the Mt. Pleasant sample were very low compared to large cities. Home age appeared to have the greatest impact on Pb levels as determined by atomic absorption spectrophotometry. The oldest homes (homes >60 years) had the following geometric means: soil = 65 μg g-1, vacuum dust = 620 μg g-1, window sill = 291 μg m-2, indoor play area = 22 μg m-2, and home entrance = 291 μg m-2. The correlation coefficient for increasing home age and soil Pb level was r = 0·63 (p < 0·000). An inverse relationship (r = -0·45, p = 0·003) occurred between soil Pb levels and distance from the road. Household Pb levels generally increased both with higher traffic volumes and greater amounts of exposed soil although both trends were not statistically significant. Study participants kept their home in a good to excellent state of repair and resided on lightly trafficked streets; as such, Pb deposition through the weathering of Pb-based paint and the former combustion of leaded gasoline was minimized.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)159-166
Number of pages8
JournalEnvironmental Pollution
Volume84
Issue number2
DOIs
StatePublished - 1994

Keywords

  • children
  • dust
  • lead
  • pollution
  • soil

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