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Prevent Poisonings: Lock Up Pesticides

Release Date: 03/16/2009
Contact Information: (news media only): Dale Kemery, (202) 564-7839 / 4355 / kemery.dale@epa.gov

(Washington, D.C. – March 16, 2009) EPA is observing National Poison Prevention Week March 15-21 to increase awareness of the danger to children of unintentional exposures from pesticides and household products. Parents and caregivers are encouraged to lock up products that could potentially harm children.

These simple steps can help prevent poisonings:

  • Store household products in a locked cabinet or shed away from children and pets.
  • Read the product label first and follow directions to the letter.
  • Never leave products unattended when you are using them.
  • Never transfer pesticides to other containers.

Every 13 seconds, U.S. poison control centers receive a call about someone being exposed to a poison. The American Association of Poison Control Centers reports that more than 50 percent of the 2 million exposure incidents each year involve children younger than six years old. In 2007, poison centers reported receiving more than 70,000 calls concerning about potential exposures to common household pesticides (potential exposures do not necessarily represent a poisoning).

The National Poison Center hotline is 1-800-222-1222.

More information on poison prevention: epa.gov/pesticides/health/poisonprevention.htm