Agricultural Fumigation Safety Guide for the Arizona Pesticide Applicator Certification
pesticide applicator training
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Series/Report no.University of Arizona Cooperative Extension Publication AZ1327
Updated December 15, 2003
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From Field to Home: Assessing Air Infiltration and Soil Track-in Transport Pathways of Agricultural Pesticides into Farmworkers' Home and Identifying Risk Factors for Increased In-Home Pesticide LevelsSugeng, Anastasia Julia (The University of Arizona., 2016)Farmworkers and their families may experience increased levels of agricultural pesticides in their homes due to both (1) take-home/soil track-in on shoes, clothes and skin, and (2) air infiltration from nearby agriculture fields via agricultural pesticide drift in the vapor phase or adhered to resuspended soil particles. This dissertation estimates the relative contributions o the take-home/soil track-in and air infiltration pathways of agricultural pesticides into homes, as well as identifies the risk factors for increased in-home agricultural pesticide levels for farmworkers and their families living near agriculture fields. Samples of outdoor air, yard soil, and house dust from 21 farmworkers' homes in Yuma County, Arizona were collected and analyzed for a suite of agricultural pesticides. To capture household information, such as behaviors, demographics, and housing structure, a participant questionnaire was administered at the time of the sampling. A pesticide transport model was developed, evaluated, and applied to quantify relative contributions of the air infiltration and the take-home/soil track-in pathways of agricultural pesticides into the house dust of the farmworkers' homes. To explore a wide-range of potential risk factors for increased agricultural pesticide levels in the homes, traditional statistical methods and Classification and Regression Tree (CART) analyses were used. The results of this study, found that the air infiltration pathway contributes to over 90% of some agricultural pesticides in the house dust found in the farmworkers' homes. In addition, among the influential risk factors for increased in-home agricultural pesticide levels was the home being a closer distance to an agricultural field, as well as the home having carpeted floors, more farmworkers per square footage of the home, and less months of heating and cooling the home. It is suggested that future intervention efforts to reduce in-home agricultural pesticide levels put more emphasis on targeting the air infiltration pathway, and take into consideration relevant risk factors for increased pesticide levels in the home.