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Development and study of methods for assessing worker and environmental exposure to pesticides. - PA1722

Partly as a result of developing CEN standards (EN 907) the use of mechanical transfer devices such as induction bowls has become more common within the UK, particularly for boom sprayers in arable and horticulture, but also for orchard sprayers. Despite UK legislation requiring their use for products such as tridemorph, there are very few data to support the common view that such devices actually are an improvement on the system still used on the older sprayers in the UK where the pesticides have to poured into the sprayer through the tank top opening. Studies to be carried out with complementary funding from HSE will provide data to indicate what improvements may have been introduced into UK agriculture in terms of reduced operator contamination or spillage during mixing and loading procedures. On-going pesticide dispensing studies will be expanded to provide potential operator and environmental exposure data with typical loading systems available within the UK.

For home and garden pesticides there are no reliable data to indicate levels of contamination during mixing and loading and application. Studies will be done to generate priority data to determine potential dermal and inhalation exposure with commonly used application techniques. Such studies include exposure of bystanders as a result of pesticide drift and re-entry scenarios. Home and garden pesticides by their nature are used in populated areas with neighbours, family and pets likely to be exposed to the pesticide during and after its use. Organophosphate pesticides such as malathion and dimethoate can be used in homes and gardens, and the fate of these needs to be evaluated.

Objective 1 Further evaluate the importance of pack size versus total amount handled in estimating operator exposure and spillage. Generate contamination data during the dispensing of tracers and pesticides from 1 to 10 litre packs under both laboratory and field conditions. Studies will be done with systems (such as induction bowls and closed transfer systems) which are typically available on farms.

Report data to PSD in the form of an interim report March 2001 and March 2002.
Prepare paper for peer review by March 2002. Final report with CSG15

Objective 2 Following on from the first years activities with Home and Garden pesticide use, determine the most appropriate use scenarios to be evaluated. This will be based on data generated in 1999/2000, and done in discussion with PSD. Generate data for potential operator exposure with H/G use of pesticides. Data available to date indicates that studies should be done to investigate application with two distinct types of application scenarios.

1. Downward applications where contamination of the lower legs and feet has been identified as being important, e.g. applications to lawns, paths or drives, and short plants/crops.
2. Applications involving upward application e.g. to fruit trees, roses

Report data to PSD as interim reports March 2001 and March 2002
Prepare paper for peer review by March 2002. Final report with CSG13
Project Documents
• Final Report : Development and study of methods for assessing worker and environmental exposure to pesticides.   (192k)
Time-Scale and Cost
From: 2000

To: 2002

Cost: £164,639
Contractor / Funded Organisations
Central Science Laboratory
Pest and Weed Control              
Pesticide use              
Plants and Animals              
Fields of Study
Pesticide Safety