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    ny time you or the people you supervise
    may be exposed to a pesticide, consider the
need to use personal protective equipment
(PPE)  clothing and devices that protect the
body from contact with pesticides.

    The law requires pesticide users to
follow all PPE instructions on the pesti-
cide label.

    More protection may be a good idea in
some situations.


When  Is PPE  Needed?
    Exposure to pesticides  getting them on
or in the body  can cause harm. Prevent or
reduce the risk by wearing PPE when exposed
to pesticides at work. Pay particular attention
to covering the skin, because it is the p'art of
the body that usually gets the most exposure
during pesticide handling tasks.
                  Most pesticide handlers
              know to wear PPE during
              mixing, loading, and applica-
              tion, but many do not wear it
              at other times when they may
              be exposed.

                  Wear PPE for any task
              that could cause pesti-
              cides to get on the skin or
              in the  mouth, eyes, or
              lungs

              For example:

                    disposing of pesticides
                     or pesticide
                     containers,

                    transporting (or
                     carrying) pesticide
                     containers that are
                     open or have pesticide
                     spilled on the outside,

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    a  helping with an application, such as
        scouting, monitoring, or checking
        pesticide coverage,

    M  flagging for aerial applications,

    B  cleaning, adjusting, or maintaining
        equipment that has pesticides on it,

    S  entering enclosed areas after
        fumigation to measure air levels or
        operate ventilation systems,

    9  entering treated areas after soil
        fumigation to adjust or remove
        coverings, such as tarpaulins,

    9  cleaning up spills.


 Using  PPE Correctly
    Remember that PPE can provide protec-
tion only if the pesticide remains on the
outside of the material. Once the pesticide
gets inside  the PPE, the material holds the
pesticide next to the skin. When this happens,
the pesticide may cause skin irritation or may
go through  the skin and into the body.

    Know how to use PPE correctly, and be
sure it is clean and in good operating condi-
tion.  Put on and remove the equipment
carefully and do not contact any pesticides
that may be on the outside of it. Do not "cheat"
on PPE by taking off gloves to adjust equip-
ment  or by  pulling the respirator away to
scratch, wipe off sweat, or take a deep breath
while  still exposed to the pesticide. Do not
wipe gloves on clothing; this will contaminate
the clothing, and pesticide may move through
to the skin.


Body Protection
    For any pesticide handling task, wear at
least a long-sleeved shirt and long-legged
pants. In many instances the pesticide label
will require coveralls, a chemical-resistant
suit, or a chemical-resistant apron.

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Long-sleeved shirt and long pants
    Long-sleeved shirts and long pants should
be made of sturdy material. Fasten the shirt
collar to protect the lower part of the neck.

Coveralls
    Coveralls should be made of a woven
fabric such as cotton, polyester, a cotton-
synthetic blend, or a nonwoven fabric. Woven
fabric should be a tightly woven, sturdy
material (such as denim) weighing 7 to 10
ounces per square yard.

    One-piece coveralls look like jump suits or
flight suits. Two-piece coveralls look like
surgeons' suits. Fasten coveralls securely so
the entire body is covered except the feet,
hands, neck, and head. Do not tuck a two-
piece coverall in at the waist; the shirt should
extend well below the waist and fit loosely
around the hips.

    More body protection is a good idea when
handling pesticides that are highly or moder-
ately toxic when absorbed through the skin or
that are skin irritants. Unless the label
directs otherwise, wear a coverall over other
clothing, preferably a long-sleeved shirt and
long pants. The clothing under the coverall
should cover the body at least from shoulders
to thighs. The pesticide labeling may specify a
particular type of clothing to be worn under
the coverall.

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    Several factors affect the amount of
protection a coverall provides.  The coverall
should fit loosely. Unless there is a layer of air
between the coverall and the skin, any pesti-
cide that gets through the coverall will be in
direct contact with the skin. Each layer of
clothing worn under the coverall adds not only
a layer of material, but also a protective layer
of air.

    The design of coveralls also influences the
amount of protection they offer. Well-designed
coveralls have tightly constructed seams and
snug, overlapping closures that do not gap or
become unfastened readily.

Chemical-resistant suit
    A few pesticide labels require handlers to
wear a chemical-resistant suit. This usually
indicates that the pesticide is very hazardous
and that extra care is necessary. When a
large amount of pesticide could be deposited
on the clothing, consider wearing a chemical-
resistant suit even if pesticide labeling does
not require it.

    Chemical-resistant suits may be one-piece
coveralls or two-piece outfits consisting of a
jacket worn over overalls or pants.

    Except in cool or climate-controlled
environments, chemical-resistant suits can be
uncomfortably warm to wear. Even in moder-
ate temperatures, wearing a chemical-
resistant suit can quickly cause overheating.
Take precautions to avoid heat stress.

Chemical-resistant apron
    The pesticide label may require a
chemical-resistant apron while mixing and
loading and while cleaning pesticide equip-
ment. Consider wearing an apron for any
handling task that involves concentrated
pesticides.  It will protect against splashes,
spills, and  dusts and will protect coveralls and
other clothing. Wear the apron over the
coveralls or the long-sleeved shirt and long
pants that the label requires for application or
other handling activities.

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     Choose an apron that extends from the
 neck to at least the knees. Some aprons have
 attached sleeves; these are especially protec-
 tive, because they protect the arms and front
 and eliminate the gap where the sleeve and
 apron meet.
    In some situations, an apron can be a
safety hazard; it can get caught in machinery
or get in the way. In those situations, consider
wearing a chemical-resistant suit instead.

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Hand and Foot Protection
    Hands and forearms get the most pesti-
cide exposure. As a result, most pesticide
labels require handlers to wear chemical-
resistant gloves. Unless the label states
otherwise, wear chemical-resistant gloves any
time pesticides may get on the hands.

    Pesticide handlers often get pesticides on
their feet. Many pesticide labels require
chemical-resistant footwear, which can be
shoes, shoe covers, or boots.

    Shoes and socks are allowed by some
pesticide labels. However, canvas, cloth, and
leather are difficult or impossible to clean
adequately.  Consider using chemical-
resistant footwear when pesticides, especially
concentrates, may get on footwear.

Choosing gloves and footwear
    Unless the pesticide label directs other-
wise, use only unlined gloves or boots. Gloves
and footwear made of polyvinyl chloride (PVC)
or rubber (butyl, nitrile, neoprene or natural
rubber) must be at least 14 mils thick.

    Always use new or freshly cleaned gloves
and footwear. Items that have been used
before may already have pesticides on the
inside.

Using gloves and footwear
    Do not contaminate the inside of gloves
and footwear. If pesticides get inside gloves or
footwear, take them off immediately, wash,
and put on a clean pair. Keep several pairs of
clean gloves and footwear available and
change whenever necessary.

    Contamination often happens when
handlers remove gloves to adjust equipment,
open a pesticide container, or wipe their face,
and then replace the gloves over contaminated
hands.
                                             7

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         Wash gloves thoroughly before taking
     them off, and wash hands thoroughly and
     dry them before putting gloves on again.

         Handlers sometimes make the mistake of
     putting on footwear with contaminated hands.
     This may transfer the pesticide from hands to
     feet.

         Keep pesticides from running down
     sleeves or pants legs and into gloves or foot-
     wear.  Use gloves that reach at least halfway
     to the elbow, put the sleeve over the glove, and
     fasten at the cuff. Or fasten the glove tightly
     to the outside of the sleeve with heavy-duty
     tape, an elastic band, or another fastener so
     the pesticide cannot run down into the glove.

         For jobs where the legs will be exposed to
     pesticides, wear trouser legs outside the boots
8

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or fasten shoe covers tightly to the trouser leg.
This keeps the pesticide from running down
the trouser leg and collecting in boots or shoe
covers.

Head and Neck Protection
    If the head and neck will be exposed to
pesticides, wear a chemical-resistant hood or
chemical-resistant wide-brimmed hat. Plastic
"safari" hats with plastic sweatbands or
"firefighter"-style hats are a good choice, and
they are relatively cool in hot weather. Other
hats and hoods are also available in chemical-
resistant materials.

    Some chemical-resistant jackets and
coveralls have attached protective hoods. If
the attached hood is not being used, tuck it
inside the neckline so it will not collect pesti-
cides.

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  INTERPRETING PPE STATEMENTS
  ON PESTICIDE LABELS
  Label Statement
  Acceptable PPE
  Long-sleeved shirt and
  long pants
 Coverall worn over
 short-sleeved shirt and
 short pants
 Coverall worn over long-
 sleeved shirt and long
 pants
 Chemical-resistant
 apron worn over
 coverall or over long-
 sleeved shirt and long
 pants
Chemical-resistant
protective suit
Waterproof suit or
Liquidproof suit
  Long-sleeved shirt and long
   pants, or
  Woven or nonwoven coverall, or
  Plastic- or other barrier-
   coated coverall, or
  Rubber or plastic suit

  Coverall worn over short-
   sleeved shirt and short
   pants,  or
  Coverall worn over long-sleeved
   shirt and long pants, or
  Coverall worn over another
   coverall, or
 Plastic- or other barrier-
  coated coverall, or
 Rubber or plastic suit

 Coverall worn over long-sleeved
  shirt and long pants, or
 Coverall worn over another
  coverall, or
 Plastic- or other barrier-
  coated coverall, or
 Rubber or plastic suit

 Chemical-resistant apron worn
  over coverall or long-sleeved
  shirt and long pants, or
 Plastic- or other barrier-
  coated coverall, or
 Rubber or plastic suit

 Plastic- or other barrier-
  coated coveralls, or
 Rubber or plastic suit

Plastic- or other barrier-
 coated coveralls, or
Rubber or plastic suit

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Label Statement
Acceptable PPE
Waterproof gloves
Chemical-resistant gloves
Chemical-resistant gloves
such as butyl or nitrile
Shoes
Chemical-resistant
footwear
Any rubber or plastic
 gloves sturdy enough to
 remain intact throughout the
 task being performed

Barrier-laminate
 gloves, or
Other gloves that glove
 selection charts or guidance
 documents indicate are
 chemical-resistant to the
 pesticide for the period
 of time required to perform
 the task

Butyl gloves, or
Nitrile gloves, or
Other gloves that glove
 selection charts or guidance
 documents indicate are
 chemical-resistant to the
 pesticide for the period
 of time required to perform
 the task

Leather, canvas, or fabric
 shoes, or
Chemical-resistant shoes, or
Chemical-resistant boots, or
Chemical-resistant shoe
 coverings (booties)

Chemical-resistant shoes, or
Chemical-resistant boots, or
Chemical-resistant shoe
 coverings (booties)
Chemical-resistant boots   Chemical-resistant boots
Chemical-resistant hood or Rubber- or plastic-coated
wide-brimmed hat
 safari-style hat, or
Rubber- or plastic-coated
 firefighter-style hat, or
Plastic- or other barrier-
 coated hood, or
Rubber or plastic hood, or
Full hood or helmet that is
 part of some respirators

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