Reality TV stars Chip and Joanna Gaines have been handed down a sizable fine from the EPA for failing to adhere to safety regulations when filming their hit show “Fixer Upper.”
The beloved Fixer Upper stars have responded swiftly and gone above and beyond to make sure there are no further issues. The EPA was made aware of the violations after reviewing the hit TV show. “The activities of Magnolia and similar renovation firms came to EPA’s attention from their depiction on popular television shows,” the EPA said in a statement.
The Gaines’ company, Magnolia Homes, has reportedly settled with the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency after breaking strict rules while removing lead paint when remodeling homes for their show.
After the EPA reviewed footage from several seasons of “Fixer Upper,” it found 33 homes renovated on the show “did not depict the lead-safe work practices normally required,” according to a statement on EPA’s website Tuesday.
The specific violations were listed by the EPA, and included the company’s failure to “post signs to clearly define the work area and warn people to remain outside that area” as well as failing to “provide home owners or occupants with an approved pamphlet about lead-based paint hazards prior to the renovation.”
The company also allegedly failed to meet stipulated regulation “such as closing doors and windows to the interior work areas, covering floor surfaces, ducts and other openings to work areas with plastic sheeting, and covering the ground with plastic sheeting to capture falling paint chips from exterior renovations.”
However, the statement noted that Magnolia Homes had been fully compliant with the agency in the matter. Magnolia Homes has agreed to pay a $40,000 civil fine.
Chip and Jo have also chosen to voluntarily spend $160,000 on a lead-paint abatement program for homes and child-occupied facilities in their hometown of Waco, Texas.
“After EPA contacted Magnolia with concerns about the company’s compliance, Magnolia took immediate steps to ensure compliance with the RRP Rule, including to obtain RRP certification and training for the firm and its staff and to ensure active compliance across all ongoing renovation projects,” the statement read.
Lead is a toxic chemical element that can cause lead poisoning if ingested or inhaled. According to the EPA, lead exposure can cause a “range of health problems” including “behavioral disorders and learning disabilities to seizures and death.”
“Putting young children at the greatest risk because their nervous systems are still developing,” the EPA noted in its statement.
“The United States Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) filed a complaint alleging that Magnolia Homes did not comply with all of the requirements of the RRP (Renovation, Repair and Painting) Rule. Shortly after being first contacted by the EPA three years ago, Magnolia Homes took immediate steps to bring its activities into compliance with [the Toxic Substances Control Act],” said a statement from Magnolia Homes, as reported by PEOPLE.
“Additionally, to take its commitment a step further, Magnolia Homes made the decision to implement a compliance management program in which it adopted an enhanced renovation record-keeping checklist for use by Magnolia Homes staff and subcontractors.”
“We continue to be proactive with our efforts to ensure total compliance moving forward, and remain committed to raising awareness in our community and our industry,” the statement concluded.
The final episode of “Fixer Upper” aired in April of this year.