People have been concerned that the lead chromate in synthetic turf, used to preserve its faux green beauty, could pose a risk to their grass-munching children or inebriated friends. Well you don’t have to rush to get your child to spit that green out anymore, because a recent study from the New Jersey Department of Health and Senior Services (NJDHSS) has found no feasible risk of lead poisoning from these products. Just look at some of these fascinating results from the study:
According to calculations made by forensic toxicologist Dr. David Black, a 50 lb. child would have to ingest over 100 lbs. of synthetic turf to be at risk of absorbing enough lead to equal the minimum threshold of elevated blood lead. That level is even more unreachable than Dr. Black’s original worst case bioaccessibility, which was based on ingesting 23 lbs. of turf.
The Consumer Product Safety Commission’s guidance states that young children “should not chronically ingest more than 15 micrograms of lead per day from consumer products.” Putting these test results in perspective, polymer and fiber engineering specialist Dr. Davis Lee calculated that a child playing on the three New Jersey fields would have to wipe his fingers on the turf and put them in his mouth 750 times in a day to receive enough lead to equal the CPSC threshold level.
While the turf in isolation appears to be safe, we wouldn’t recommend adding it to a diet of imported toys and paint chips.
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