Press Releases

Map Outlines Lead Safety for California Artificial Turf Fields


The Center for Environmental Health (CEH) has screened more than 500 artificial turf fields in California for lead, in response to concerns that some older turf fields may have high levels of lead. CEH has posted an online map showing lead levels for more than 300 California fields in 18 counties that are publicly accessible, and the good news is that most turf fields do not pose a lead threat.

CA_turf_map2“We’re pleased to tell parents and schools that lead is not a problem in most turf fields,” said CEH Turf Testing and Outreach Coordinator Matt Nevins. “If anyone nationwide has concerns, they can still receive free turf screening from CEH.”

CEH has been screening artificial turf fields since last July. CEH staff traveled the state to screen turf fields, and hundreds of child care centers, schools, park administrators and concerned residents have sent turf samples to CEH for free lead screening. In addition to the map, a CEH online video outlines steps consumers can take to minimize exposure to lead from turf fields and on how to receive free turf screening from CEH.

Some older turf fields were made with lead-containing pigments, and CEH testing and investigations prompted the nonprofit to initiate legal action in 2008. The California Attorney General and CEH reached legal agreements with the leading turf companies in July 2010; the agreements required the companies to limit lead in turf to no more than 50 parts per million. A portion of the legal settlements have funded the CEH turf testing and outreach project, which has been administered by the nonprofit Public Health Trust.

For more information, including a video showing how to receive free screening of artificial turf for lead risks, visit the CEH turf project.