Following the closure of three Washington, D.C., playgrounds that tested for elevated levels of lead, dozens of pieces of playground equipment are now off limits in Buffalo, N.Y., for the same reason.
According to the local NBC affiliate, county leaders got together Thursday to talk about the source of the lead in the playground equipment and what to do next.
The lead-tainted equipment has been wrapped in yellow caution tape and will be either removed or covered up in the next few weeks.
"We're working as quickly as possible to take care of this issue. And when I say that this is a priority, I can tell you every day this issue is being discussed," county parks commissioner Troy Schinzel said.
Here's the county's full breakdown of its inspection of the parks:
- 52 playground equipment items (94 were inspected)
- 5 shelters (44 were inspected)
- 4 bathrooms (17 were inspected)
- 5 picnic tables (103 were inspected)
- A total of 66 items identified as having lead (258 were inspected)
The county parks department says it will now do training on the issue.
"The deputy commissioner's working with the health department in providing the staff that will be removing the equipment the proper training before we remove the equipment," Schinzel said.
Removal of the equipment could start as early as Monday of next week.
"I would estimate that depending on weather and training in the next two to three weeks, we hope to have these 66 items taken care of either encapsulation and/or removal," Schinzel said. "This program should ensure that lead is no longer an issue in Erie County Parks Department."