According to the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA), an emergency call is made to U.S. poison control centers every 13 seconds, and 40% of those calls involve injuries to children under three years of age. More than 77,000 of those calls typically involve poisonings by common household pesticides. The EPA recognizes March 16 – 22 as National Poison Prevention Week, and offers the following home safety information to help prevent poisonings in the home this year:
Common chemical-containing products in U.S. homes:
- “bath and kitchen disinfectants and sanitizers, including bleach
- household cleaning or maintenance products, such as drain cleaner, paints, or glues
- automotive products stored around the home, such as anti-freeze or windshield washer fluid
- health or beauty care products such as medicines, hair and nail products
- roach sprays and baits
- insect repellents
- rat and other rodent poisons
- weed killers
- products used to kill mold or mildew
- flea and tick shampoos, powders, and dips for pets
- swimming pool chemicals”Steps you can take to prevent poisonings:
- “Always store household products in a locked cabinet or garden shed away from both your children’s and pet’s reach.
- Read the product label first and follow the directions to the letter.
- Use the safest possible cleaning products. Look for the Design for the Environment (DfE) label on products.
- Never leave products unattended when you are using them.
- Re-close products if interrupted during application (e.g., phone call, doorbell, etc.).
- Use child-resistant packaging properly by closing the container tightly after use.
- Never transfer pesticides to other containers; children may associate certain containers with food or drink.
- Remove children, pets, and toys before applying pesticides (inside or outside the home). Follow label directions to determine when children and pets can re-enter the area that has been treated.
- Never use illegal pesticides (e.g., Tres Pasitos, unregistered Insecticidal Chalk, or Tempo). These products have not been reviewed by EPA and their use may pose a danger to public health. Always look for an EPA Registration ID number on the label. (Example: EPA Reg. No. 500-123456)
- Post the Poison Control Centers’ national hotline number, 1-800-222-1222, near your phone. Program the number into your phone’s “address book” or redial feature.”Previously on the DC Metro Area Personal Injury Law Blog, we have posted articles related to:
- Year-round safe parenting tips for 2008
- Cough and cold medicine overdoses found to contribute significantly to pediatric ER visits
- Indications that many dental prosthetics contain dangerous levels of lead
For information about your legal rights, please click here or call the law firm of Regan Zambri & Long, PLLC at (202) 463-3030.