The Worker Protection Standard

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Transcript The Worker Protection Standard

The Worker Protection Standard

-A Short Overview See the “How to Comply” manual for more information.

Background on WPS

• • • Fully implemented in 1994.

Designed to protect agricultural workers and pesticide handlers from exposure to pesticides.

• Employers required to provide protections for their employees.

Covers all herbicide, insecticide, fungicide, etc., uses on farms, forests, nurseries and greenhouses.

The “How to Comply” Manual

• • All persons who employ agricultural workers should obtain and read HTC.

Contact county Extension office or the Plant Board about obtaining a copy.


• • Employer: Any person who hires contracts for the services of workers for the production of agricultural plants.

Handler: Any person who mixes, loads, applies, cleans application equipment, or disposes of pesticides (includes flaggers).


• • Worker: Any person involved with production of agricultural plants but not handling pesticides.

REI: The time after the end of a pesticide application during which entry into the treated area is restricted (usually 12-48 hours for most pesticides).

Key Points of WPS

• • • • • • • Information at “central location” Safety training Personal protective equipment (PPE) Decontamination supplies Notification Emergency assistance Information exchange between commercial applicators and agricultural employers

Information at Central Location

• • • Safety poster Information on nearest medical facility Pesticide application records – Product name – EPA registration number – Location and description of treated area – Time, date and REI of application – Keep records posted for 30 days after REI

Pesticide Safety Training

• • Certified applicators may train their own employees (required every 5 years).

• Must use EPA approved materials and answer questions.

May be trained as workers or handlers (usually handlers in Arkansas).

Safety Training cont.

• Extension Service, Americorp volunteers, and approved trainers can provide training.

• Handlers must be trained before any handling task.

• Workers must be trained before working 5 days.

Personal Protective Equipment (PPE)

• • • Employers must provide and maintain PPE.

They must make sure it is worn, cleaned, and inspected each day before use.

• Employers must take steps to prevent heat illness with their employees.

Employers must provide pesticide-free area for putting on and removing PPE.


• • • • • • Within 1/4 mile of all workers and handlers.

Enough water for routine and emergency washing.

Soap and single-use towels.

Clean coveralls (for handlers).

Handlers must have supplies when removing ppe.

Must be at mixing, loading site.

Notification of Workers

• • • • • Orally warn workers and post treated areas if label requires (for most pesticides you have a choice of the method).

Tell workers which method is in effect.

Post all greenhouse applications.

Must have EPA approved sign when posting.

Remove signs within 3 days after REI expires.

Emergency Assistance

• • • Employer must provide when employees may have been poisoned or injured by pesticides.

Prompt transportation to medical facility.

Provide info. (product, EPA reg. #, active ingredient, etc.) to victim and medical personnel.

Information Exchange

• Commercial applicators must provide certain info. to agricultural employers: – Location and description of treated area.

– Time and date of application.

– Product name, EPA reg. #, active ingredient, and REI.

– Type of notification required.

– Any other safety requirements from label.

Information Exchange cont.

• Agricultural employers must provide info. to commercial applicators: – Location and description of treated areas on establishment where pesticides will be applied or an REI is in effect while commercial applicator is on the establishment.

– Restrictions on entering those areas.

Exemptions for Family Farms

• Agricultural owners do not have to provide the following for their family members: – Information at central location – Safety training – Decontamination sites – Emergency assistance – Notification – Provide, clean, and maintain PPE