Newspaper article THE JOURNAL RECORD

Accreditation Opens Market for OKC Lab

Newspaper article THE JOURNAL RECORD

Accreditation Opens Market for OKC Lab

Article excerpt

Accreditation as a national lead-testing laboratory is expected to develop a new market for an Oklahoma City testing and analysis firm, according to its president.

This accreditation will allow StanTech Analytical Services, a division of Standard Testing and Engineering Co., 3400 Lincoln Blvd., to compete for projects nationally and increase its presence in the market, said Thomas J. Kelly.

"This is going to be big because the lead problem is big," he said. "We don't have an estimate on how big it is or what it will cost to remedy it, but it will be big."

It's not as big a problem as asbestos, although both environmental contaminants essentially can cause as much harm to public health.

"Once lead is ingested into the (human) system, its a long, costly and time-consuming process to get it out," said Donald R. Moore, StanTech vice president. "When lead gets into the body, it causes permanent damage that cannot be reversed."

The company has been accredited by the American Industrial Hygiene Association to test for lead in paints, soils and dust. StanTech is one of 40 laboratory companies accredited in the United States and the only one in Oklahoma, Moore said.

What the accreditation means is that samples taken by contractors doing remediation work can be tested in Oklahoma City to confirm that lead has been removed.

"Now that we're accredited, we'll be able to compete better for national products," Kelly said. "We already are competing in price. Now with this we can offer our clients even more and we will be more recognized on a national level. We still will offer the same convenience, quality and reliability that we've always offered."

Lead, recognized as a health hazard since Phoenician times, is a particularly difficult problem in public housing areas because it is in paints and on some furniture.

"The pernicious thing about lead is that it has a sweet taste and young children are prone to peel chips of paint off the walls and eat it," Moore said. "Once it's in the body, lead causes a lot of damage.

"One of the most tragic things that I have seen was in a day-care center that had a wide hall and they would set up their cots in the hall for the kids to rest on during nap-time," he said. …

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