In response to increasing inquiries about lead poisoning - attention largely spurred by the health crisis in Flint, Mich. - Pennsylvania state health officials Thursday released information and guidelines to help reduce the risk of exposure.
The primary source of lead poisoning is not from water, but rather from aging, deteriorating lead-based paint, the state Health Department said.
Although lead paint was banned in 1978, many older homes still contain the toxic substance. And Pennsylvania has more old homes than most states.
Pennsylvania ranks third in the nation for the number of housing units built before 1950 (when lead was more prevalent), and fourth in the nation for housing units built before 1978, according to a 2014 Department of Health report that cited 2010 Census data.
While drinking water is a secondary source of concern to conditions in older housing, Department of Environmental Protection Secretary John Quigley said Thursday that keeping lead out of Pennsylvanians' drinking water remains a top priority.
Here are some tips for reducing the chances of lead poisoning: