Minimizing occupational exposure to pesticides: Closed systems and worker safety
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It has long been recognized that the handling of pesticide materials while preparing spray mixtures can be a primary source of worker exposure in field operations. The means most commonly relied upon to minimize such exposures include precautionary warnings on the label and suggestions or requirements for the use of protective clothing or skin coverings, eye shields, and respirators. While effective to the extent that such safety guidelines and provisions are carefully observed and unfailingly used, worker judgments against the need for certain protective measures and the universal tendency to reject inconvenience have resulted in a continuance of poisoning cases related to such work activities. In California, physicians’ reports analyzed by the State Department of Health and the State Department of Food and Agriculture (1974) show that during the early seventies mixing and loading, in relation to other work activities predisposing to pesticide exposures, were among the categories of activity sustaining the highest incidence of serious exposures exceeded only by the involvements of ground applicators as a grouping at risk.
KeywordsClosed System California Department Cyanic Acid Poisoning Case Wettable Powder
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