Remodelers, take note:

Lowe’s Home Centers, one of the nation’s largest home improvement retailers, has agreed to implement a comprehensive, corporate-wide compliance program at its over 1,700 stores nationwide to ensure that the contractors it hires to perform work minimize lead dust from home renovation activities, as required by the Federal Lead Renovation, Repair, and Painting (RRP) Rule, the Department of Justice and the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) announced on April 14, 2014. The company will also pay a $500,000 civil penalty, which is the largest ever for violations of the RRP Rule.

The government complaint alleged that Lowe’s failed to provide documentation showing that the contractors it hired to perform renovation projects for Lowe’s customers had been certified by EPA, had been properly trained, had used lead-safe work practices, or had correctly used EPA-approved lead test kits at renovation sites. EPA’s investigation showed that at three homes located in Alton, IL, Trotwood, OH, and Kent OH, Lowe’s contractors failed to ensure that work areas had been properly contained during renovations and cleaned up after renovations.

EPA discovered the violations through a review of records initially prompted by tips and complaints submitted by the public.