Potential Revision of Safety Standards for Agricultural Workers Handling or Exposed to Pesticides

The EPA has published Notice that it has initiated a rulemaking process for revision of regulations making up part of the Agricultural Worker Protection Standard. In particular, the EPA intends to revise requirements relating to three areas: (1) the minimum age (currently 18 years old) of workers who handle pesticides or who are permitted early entry into pesticide-treated areas; a requirement that agricultural employers must, under certain circumstances, provide pesticide application information and safety data sheets to the designated representative of a worker or pesticide handler; and (3) requirements that employers keep workers and other persons out of the areas around pesticide application equipment (referred to as Application Exclusion Zones or “AEZs”) during pesticide application, and that pesticide application be suspended if workers or other persons are within AEZs.

A specific proposal for revision of these regulations will be published sometime in 2018, and a public comment period will be opened on the proposal at that time.  Until then, this is an issue to be watched, and Citizens Comment will update this site with further information as it becomes available.