United States
Environmental Protection
Office of Enforcement
& Compliance Assurance
Washington, DC 20460
EPA 305-F-98-026b
September 1998
                                                                       AT  *t ^*   T
                                                               g  Center
                                                                  Helping Agriculture Comity with
                                                                  Environmental Requirements
            FOCUS    ON
                    Information  Exchange  Between

                    Commercial Handlers and

                    Growers - Part 2

                    The Agricultural Worker Protection Standard (WPS) is a regulation issued by the U.S.
                    Environmental Protection Agency in 1992 and amended in 1995. It covers pesticides that are
                    used in the production of agricultural plants on farms, forests, nurseries, and greenhouses. The
                    WPS requires you to take steps to reduce the risk of pesticide-related illness and injury if you (1)
                    use such pesticides, or (2) employ workers or pesticide handlers who are exposed to such

                    This fact sheet will help you understand how to comply with WPS requirements concerning the
                    information that commercial handlers and their customers must provide to each other about
                    pesticide-treated areas. The questions answered here were submitted to the Agency by people
                    seeking clarification on this part of the regulation. The questions and answers were released by
                    EPA's Office of Compliance on March 15, ] 995.
                     If the initial notification of an
                     application cannot be made
                     because of difficulty in reaching
                     the grower (agricultural
                     employer), can notification be
                     made after application?
                                      No. There are no provisions for
                                      allowing notification after application
                                      due to difficulty in contacting the
                                      grower (agricultural employer) initially.

                        	11(11	f	I	
         1 can commercial
      handlers comply with
      tlit; requirement for
    !• notifying grmmrs in
      advance about
      pesticide applications?
   i'i	f-w
  How soon before an application
  must a commercial handler
  (handler employer) provide the
  information to the grower
  (agricultural employer)?
  The WPS requires that the information
  be provided by the commercial handler
  to the grower anytime before the
  application takes place. [40 CFR

  The WPS requires that before
  the application of any pesticide
  on an agricultural establishment,
  a commercial handler must
  provide or must assure that their
  customer — the operator of the
  farm, forest, nursery, or green-
  house — is aware of certain
                          tne Pest'-
            hs,app«cation. [46 CFR
  170,224].  What constitutes
  compliance with this require-
  nient? '           , , , ,„ ........ , '  " ,
  EPA recommends that the operator of
'};She agricultural establishment
  (agricultural employer) and the
  commercial pesticide handler (handler
  employer) agree on a notification
  process that will ensure that workers will
  riot be in an area while it is being
  treated or under an Restricted Entry
  Interval (REI).  For example, they could
  agree that without prior mutual
  agreement, an application will never
  occur before the scheduled tinie,
 and the grower (agricultural employer)
 will not permit workers into the area to
 be treated until he/she receives
 notification from the commercial
 handler that:
 •    either the application will not take
     place until a specified future time at
     the earliest, or
 •    the application has taken place and
     specific information required by the
    WPS is provided to the grower.

 Examples of compliance:
 1.  An oral exchange of the required
    information between the
    commercial handler and the grower
    prior to an application would comply
    with WPS notification
 2.  Leaving a complete message on a
    telephone answering machine prior
    to the application would constitute
    compliance if the message was
    actually received by the grower prior
,  ;: ; to the application;
 3.  Leaving a complete message on the
    answering machine prior to the
    application would constitute
    compliance if the commercial
    handler and grower had agreed that
    by leaving a complete message on
    the answering machine notification
    could be accomplished. In this
    example,  the commercial handler
    would have satisfied his/her
                              Ag Center Fact Sheet Series
                              Agrichemicals/WPS - Information Exchange 2
                                                                          Page 2

                            obligations under the WPS even if
                            the message was not checked by the
                            grower prior to the application. The
                            grower, however, would remain
                            responsible if workers were sent into
                            treated areas in violation of any
                            portion of the WPS.
The Ag Center
comments on this
document and its
other services.
For more information
You can get more facts about
compliance by calling the Ag Center's
toll-free number. Materials can be sent
to you by fax or mail, or you can talk to
an Ag Center representative. For a list
of all publications available from the Ag
Center, request document number
10001, "Ag Center Publications."
                          National Agriculture Compliance
                          Assistance Center
                          901 N. 5* Street
                          Kansas City, KS 66 10 1

                                   United States Environmental
                                   Protection Agency
                                   Washington, DC 20460
                         Ag Center Fact Sheet Series
                                                                                                   Page 3

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