The 1992 Worker Protection Standard protects over three and a half million people who work with pesticides at over 560,000 workplaces. The Worker Protection Standard, administered by the U.S. EPA, represents a major strengthening of national efforts to safeguard the health of agricultural workers and pesticide handlers. Effective implementation of the WPS will substantially lower the risk of pesticide poisonings among agricultural workers and pesticide handlers.
Protection During Applications
Applicators are prohibited from applying a pesticide in a way that will expose workers or other persons. Workers are excluded from areas while pesticides are being applied.
Restricted-entry intervals must be specified on all agricultural plant pesticide product labels. Workers are excluded from entering a pesticide treated area during the restricted-entry interval, with only narrow exceptions.
Personal Protective Equipment
Personal protective equipment must be provided and maintained for handlers and early-entry workers.
Notification of Workers
Workers must be notified about treated areas so that they may avoid inadvertent exposures.
Handlers and workers must have an ample supply of water, soap, and towels for routine washing and emergency decontamination.
Transportation must be made available to a medical care facility if a worker or handler may have been poisoned or injured. Information must be provided about the pesticide to which the person may have been exposed.
Pesticide Safety Training and Safety Posters
Training is required for all workers and handlers, and a pesticide safety poster must be displayed.
Access to Labeling and Site Specific Information
Handlers and workers must be informed of pesticide label requirements. Central posting of recent pesticide applications is required.
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