Wheel weights are clipped to rims of wheels to balance the tires. SF City staff are required to buy lead-free wheel weights because 1.6 million pounds of lead falls off wheels in the U.S. and can:
- Contaminate drinking water; and is linked to reduced intelligence and behavior problems.
- Be washed into rivers and the ocean.
- Create lead dust and contaminate the air we breathe.
Lead wheel weights have been prohibited in California since January 1, 2010. The United States Postal Service, City of San Francisco Central Shops, and Contra Costa County use lead-free wheel weights. Check out this video from US EPA to learn more.