The Guam Environmental Protection Agency (Guam EPA) Pesticides Enforcement Program will continue to enforce the recently approved Pesticide Rules and Regulations, including a provision that goes into effect this weekend.
The new law requires all workers who handle pesticides, including antimicrobial pesticides like Lysol or other cleaners, to attend a Basic Training A class. Workers who are not BT-A certified, are not legally allowed to use pesticides in the workplace. This law affects many hotels, government agencies and other businesses.
Workers were given until March 31, 2012 to obtain the proper training required by law. Guam EPA will begin enforcing the statue on April 2, 2012.
BT-A classes were offered through private trainers or the Guam Hotel and Restaurant Association (GHRA). In September, Guam EPA offered “Train the Trainer” or TTT courses to ensure there were enough instructors on island. Prior to the training in September, Guam EPA and GHRA made public announcements concerning the availability of the TTT.
“Those who use pesticides must be properly trained for their safety, and for the safety of the public,” said Guam EPA Acting Administrator Eric M. Palacios. “Requiring this training helps protect our workforce and environment by ensuring these chemicals are being used properly.”
Many businesses and agencies have proactively worked to get their staff certified. Guam EPA’s Pesticide Program estimates 1,100 workers have been certified. They also estimate a total of 4,000 individuals will be required to have certifications to continue in their current duties. Classes are regularly offered through GHRA and private instructors.
A pesticide is defined as any substance designed to kill or mitigate a pest. Legal pesticides have a small U.S. EPA registration number on the label. Registered pesticides must have information about proper storage, use, disposal of the product and what to do in an emergency situation.
For more information about the Pesticide Enforcement Program, or to the training, please contact Tammy Jo Anderson Taft at 475-1646, 988-7582 or email TammyJoAnderson.Taft@epa.guam.gov.