The National Lead Laboratory Accreditation Program (NLLAP)
Laboratories that are accredited by IAS for the analysis of lead in the matrices of paint films, dust and soil will be recognized by the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) under the National Lead Laboratory Accreditation Program (NLLAP) as being capable of performing adequate analyses for lead in paint films (chips), dust and soil samples.
The National Lead Laboratory Accreditation Program is an EPA program that defines the minimum requirements and abilities that a laboratory must meet to attain EPA recognition as an accredited lead testing laboratory. EPA established NLLAP to recognize laboratories that demonstrate the ability to accurately analyze paint chips, dust, or soil samples for lead.
Fixed-site laboratories, mobile laboratories, and testing firms that operate portable equipment are all eligible to obtain EPA recognition under NLLAP. An organization may choose to be recognized for one, two, or all three of the sample types (paint chips, dust, and soil).
NLLAP ensures that participating laboratories have met EPA requirements and demonstrated the capability to accurately analyze paint chips, dust, or soil samples for lead. All laboratories recognized by EPA under NLLAP are required to undergo on-site assessments conducted by an Accreditation Body participating in NLLAP, and to successfully perform on a continual basis in the Environmental Lead Proficiency Analytical Testing (ELPAT) Program. The ELPAT is the EPA-approved laboratory performance proficiency testing program administered by the American Industrial Hygiene Association to ensure that laboratories continue to accurately analyze samples for lead.
Laboratories and other testing firms recognized under NLLAP follow the Laboratory Quality System Requirements (LQSR), version 3 developed by EPA. The LQSR identifies the minimum requirements laboratories must meet for use by accrediting organizations when evaluating laboratories performing environmental testing activities under NLLAP. It is based on the requirements of the International Organization for Standardization and International Electrochemical Commission (ISO/IEC) Standard 17025:2005 (E) General requirements for the competence of testing and calibration laboratories.
Homeowner Benefit of Using NLLAP
The presence of lead could be a serious concern if you are a homeowner or prospective home buyer. Testing for lead should be considered if a homeowner plans to sell or buy a home built before 1978, has children, or plans to renovate, whether as a do-it-yourself project or by a contractor.
When Samples Must be Analyzed by an EPA-recognized NLLAP Laboratory
In states, territories and tribes where EPA is operating a federal Lead-Based Paint Activity program, any paint chips, dust or soil samples collected in a risk assessment, lead hazard screen, or clearance after a lead abatement must be analyzed by a laboratory or testing firm recognized by EPA under NLLAP.
In states, territories or tribes where the state, territory or tribe administers its own EPA-authorized program, the requirements for the analysis of paint chips, dust, and soil samples by an EPA-recognized NLLAP laboratory or testing firm are a minimum requirement. Even though the overall program is authorized by EPA, a state, territory or tribe may have additional testing regulations that are more stringent than EPA requirements. To be sure what the requirements are, check with the state or tribal program where sampling will be conducted.
Laboratories interested in accreditation can click here for more information.