I think they can only shoot lead here anyway Clark County health authorities are looking into possible lead exposure at an indoor rifle and pistol club after learning about elevated lead levels in the blood of young members of the Orchards-area club. This week, the health department took voluntary blood samples from about 40 members of the Vancouver Rifle and Pistol Club at 12212 N.E. 76th St. Weve been working really closely with the club, said Dr. Alan Melnick, the countys health officer. Theyve been really cooperative. Health authorities say lead dust and fumes can be generated by the combustion of lead-containing primers, the friction of bullets against the gun barrel and fragmentation as bullets strike the backstop. The problem can be pronounced at indoor firing ranges. The issue came to light earlier this month, when a family that belongs to the club tested for lead exposure. Melnick wouldnt identify the people who tested positive for lead exposure, but he said three children recorded levels above the 10 parts per million considered to be a level of concern for children 6 and older. None of the levels measured above the 25 ppm threshold considered to be a concern for adults. The levels were high enough to require the familys physician to notify health authorities. Besides conducting additional voluntary blood tests of club members, Melnick said the health department conducted an environmental assessment of the range. The county could make recommendations such as improved ventilation or ensuring members avoid eating or drinking in areas where dust could be ingested inadvertently. Really, the main thing is hygiene, said Paul Davis, the clubs secretary. Operating plan Davis said the club, which has about 280 members, was originally incorporated in the early 1930s. Its been housed at the 50-foot indoor range in Orchards since 1974. Melnick noted that the club should come out of the assessment with an operating plan that assures its members safety. He said the same assurance cant necessarily be made with other indoor ranges or garages where people use firearms. People can go anywhere to do this stuff, Melnick said. Low levels of lead exposure can adversely affect the intellectual development of young children, according to the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. Lead can affect almost every organ and system in the human body, according to the Agency for Toxic Substances and Disease Registry. The main target for lead toxicity is the nervous system, both in adults and children. Its a hazardous material, Melnick said. Thats why we got it out of gasoline. Melnick said a state-operated laboratory agreed to expedite the blood samples, and authorities should get the results as soon as today.