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Restricted Entry Intervals

Restricted Entry Interval (REI) is the period of time after a pesticide has been applied that agricultural workers or anyone else must not do hand labour tasks in treated areas.  The REI allows the pesticide residues and vapours to dissipate to safe levels for work to be done.
Hand labour tasks involve substantial worker contact with treated surfaces such as plants, plant parts or soil.  Examples of these activities include:
·    harvesting, detasseling, thinning, weeding, scouting, planting, mowing, roguing, and packing produce into containers in the field or greenhouse.
You can only do these tasks after the Restricted Entry Interval has ended.
An REI can range from 0 hours to several days.  A pesticide label may state different REIs that are specific to a crop and post application task (e.g. thinning, scouting, harvesting).  If the REI is not stated on a label, use a 12 hour REI.
Here are examples of REIs stated on pesticide labels:


Restricted Entry Interval

24 hours (all crops)
Scala SC:
12 hours except 24 hours for hand-thinning on apples and for hand labour (training, tying, leaf pulling) on grapes
62.5 WG:
12 hours except 10 days for hand harvest and hand pruning on Saskatoon berries

Tell Farm Workers and Others of the REIs

Notify your farm manager, farm workers, scouts and others of the Restricted Entry Intervals.  Everyone needs to know.  One way to notify is to post signs, such as the example shown, at any main access points into the treated area.  In addition to posting signs, keep spray records and REIs in a main location where they can be readily seen and read by farm workers or anyone else on the farm.

Early Entry

Everyone is restricted from entering between 0-4 hours.

A Certified Farmer may need to enter a treated area early to do short-term tasks before the end of a Restricted Entry Interval. 

Early Entry is allowed under the following precautions.
Between 4-12 hours, a Certified Farmer may enter the area if she: 
→wears a NIOSH-approved respirator and any other protective clothing and personal protective equipment stated on the label for mixing and loading and 
→does not touch any treated surfaces, and 
→does not stay in the area for more than a total of 1 hour in any 24-hour period.

After 12 hours (if the REI hasn’t yet ended), a worker may enter the area if she:  
→does not do hand labour tasks and does not touch surfaces that could have pesticide residues on them.
When the REI has ended, anyone may enter.  Certified Farmers should plan pesticide applications around work tasks so that no one needs to enter treated areas early.

This is an example of an Early Entry for a pesticide with a 24-hour REI:

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Emergency Numbers

Emergency Numbers 9-1-1

Spills Action Centre: 1-800-268-6060 Ontario Poison Centre: 1-800-268-9017 Transport Emergencies: *666 (cell) 1-888-CANUTEC 1-888-226-8832 Farm Information
Contact Person: Phone:

Water Soluble Packages

Water Soluble Packages (WSP) are designed to reduce exposure during mixing and loading.  However, the Agricultural Handlers Exposure Task Force(AHETF) found that ►users were more exposed when using Water Soluble Packages than Wettable Powders.
Exposure occurred when users sprayed high pressure water on the packets and/or intentionally broke the packets to help them dissolve.   Use Water Soluble Packages properly to reduce exposure.Follow these handling and mixing instructions developed by the United States Environmental Protection Agency and the AHETF. Handling Instructions •Mix in the spray tank only.   •Keep the WSP intact. Do not cut or puncture the WSP.  Do not break or release the contents. •Keep the WSP in the outer packaging until just before use. •Keep the WSP dry until adding it to the spray tank. •Reseal the WSP in its outer packaging to protect any unused WSP(S). •Handle with dry gloves.

If the WSP tears or ruptures before or during handling, put on full Protective Clothing and Equ…

Pesticide Safety for Farmer Assistants

Farmer Assistants who use Class 2 or 3 pesticides on farms must be trained.
Certified Farmers are responsible for all pesticide use and handling on their farms including the use and handling of Class 2 or 3 pesticides by Farmer Assistants supervised by Certified Farmers.  Farmer Assistants could be family members, farm employees or seasonal workers.
Farmer Assistants must: ·be 16 years of age or older ·work on a farm under the supervision of a Certified Farmer ·have basic pesticide safety training recognized by the Ministry of the Environment, Conservation and Parks before they handle or use Class 2 or 3 pesticides ·re-train every five years.

There are two ways for Farmer Assistants to get the training they need.  They can: ·participate in a Grower Pesticide Safety Course (no test required), or ·participate in a training session presented by an On-Farm Instructor.
On-Farm Instructors

Restricted Entry Interval Signs - For Sale

For Sale: Restricted Entry Interval Signs
Trilingual - Spanish, French, and English
One way to notify farm workers and others of the Restricted Entry Interval is to post a sign at the main ways into areas applied with pesticides.
Two types of 12 x 12” signs are available:

      REI Sign Laminated                                 REI Sign Corrugated Plastic
-Durable laminated cardstock                  - Sturdy corrugated plastic -Dry erase, suitable for writing                 - Indoor and outdoor use

Purchase of Class 4 Pesticides by Farmers who are not Certified

Class 4, 5, 6 or 7 pesticides may be purchased for use on farms by farmers who are not certified through the Grower Pesticide Safety Course.
To buy Class 4 pesticides, a farmer must provide the vendor with his/her Farm Business Registration number OR a signed copy of the Ontario Ministry of the Environment, Conservation and Parks (MECP) form titled “Farmer Self Declaration to Enable Purchase of a Class 4 Pesticide” on which a farmer declares that she/he is a farmer as defined under the Reg. 63/09.  The form is available through the Ontario Ministry of the Environment, Conservation and Parks' website.
Your pesticide vendor will know which Class 4 pesticides they sell and they may help you plan your pest management program based on Class 4 pesticides.  There are over 700 herbicides, insecticides and fungicides in Class 4.
You can search for a pesticide’s Class or find a list of the pesticides in each Class on the internet.  Search for “Pesticides Classification Database” to search for…

Due Diligence

Take Reasonable Care When You Apply Pesticides
Attitude!  Do you really care about yourself and what you do?  Do you take pride in your work?  Are your considerate of others?  Do you consider yourself to be a professional?  Do you look and act like a professional applicator? 
Are you qualified to work with pesticides?  Do you have the required education, experience, training, and certification/licence?  Do you attend workshops at the local dealers that sell pesticides?
Is the pesticide registered in Ontario and Canada? 
Was the pesticide you applied purchased from an approved pesticide vendor?
Did you read and comply with the label instructions for the pesticide you were using?  
Did you check the weather forecast before you applied the pesticide?
Did you check the wind speed and direction, and other factors such as humidity and temperature before applying the pesticide?
Did you notify residents who may be affected by spray drift prior to applying pesticides …