Lead dust decontamination works:
The Great Hall, Lincoln’s Inn, LONDON WC2A 3TL
Main Contractor: Capital Stone Renovation Ltd Graham Construction Ltd
Contract Administrator: Mr Henry Skinner, Treasury Office, Lincoln’s Inn, London WC2A 3TL
Environmental Consultant: Mr Trevor Laurent, Air Surveys Limited, 2 College Mews, St. Ann’s Hill, Wandsworth, London, SW18 2SJ
Works: To remove all lead dust contamination from the underside of the old slate roof. The Victorian horse hair felt insulation was also contaminated.
Duration: 10 weeks.
Capital Stone Renovation secured the Main Contract works to refurbish the external elevations of the Great Hall and renewal of the roof slates was part of that package.
At interview stage we cautioned the Inn that in our experience they were likely to be faced with a lead contamination issue under the slates as this is a classic settling area for atmospheric lead dust to accumulate. Fortunately, the Inn made provision for these works in their budgets, so when sampling actually established high lead dust contamination everyone was prepared.
Once we established our decontamination area, works could start and our technicians carefully lifted each slate individually, spraying the area with a fine mist of water to limit dust distribution and the risk of potentially contaminating the entire site. Once the slate is lifted it is washed down by hand to remove any residues and then packed in sealed polyethene bags for disposal. The area beneath the slate is then vacuumed with a HEPA filtered vacuum to lift off and entrap all the dust and horse hair felt.
To strip a roof of this size and to prevent further contamination to other personnel, our technicians have to work in a co-ordinated system which is devised to suit each situation, a skill learnt at the ‘coal face’ rather than on a course!