Bayer CropScience Puts Safety First
Friday, September 26, 2014
By: Monty Eberhart, VP Human Safety, NA Bayer CropScience
National Farm Safety Week is an important time to remind ourselves about the importance of safety, and review the procedures and practices that protect us every day. Bayer is dedicated to safety 52 weeks of the year, but this week, we would like to take extra time to share our practices with you.
Safety is incredibly important to the Human Safety team at Bayer CropScience. We appreciate working for a company that always puts safety first. Bayer is committed to developing safe and effective products with clearly written label directions. Having pesticide handlers read and follow label directions is absolutely critical to ensuring safety for humans and the environment.
It takes preparation, work and continuous education to keep everyone safe. The saying from our Bayer CropScience handbook is true - “safety is no accident.”
The Human Safety team at Bayer CropScience focuses on the safety of handlers who mix and apply our products as well as reentry workers who potentially contact treated crops to perform important post-application crop production activities. We develop the comprehensive toxicity and exposure data required to meet the pesticide regulatory standard, which is “a reasonable certainty of no harm to humans”. These data serve as the basis for the safe use directions on our product labels.
For any pesticide handling activity, both personal safety and protection of the environment are critical. We follow four important steps to safety at Bayer CropScience: Plan, Prepare, Predict and Protect. And I would like to reiterate – always read the label. The entire label.
1. Plan - There are several decisions to be made about how to fit the application to the pest control situation. Make sure you have a well-developed plan before you begin.
2. Prepare - Read and understand the label and all of the instructions before you begin. Always read the applicable sections of the pesticide label before opening a pesticide container or beginning any pesticide handling activity. The pesticide label contains precautions and instructions that must be followed in order to use the product safely and appropriately.
- Review the application process, and what you would do in case of an accident. For Bayer CropScience employees, it is important to keep up to date on the Field Safety Manual [hyperlink if possible], so you know the proper protocol for any situation.
4. Protect - Personal protective equipment (PPE) is key. Wearing the proper clothing is a necessary step to ensuring your personal safety when working in crop protection.
These four steps are crucial to ensure your safety and the safety of the nature around you.
While most of my team’s work revolves around labeling/pesticides/etc., farm safety goes far beyond crop protection.
For more safety tips, take a look at our Farm Safety Week infographic
and follow us on Twitter at @Bayer4CropsUS
. Join the conversation with #FarmSafetyWeek
Be safe out there.
About the Author:
Monty Eberhart is the Vice President of Human Safety for Bayer CropScience, North America. He has an M.S. in Industrial Hygiene from Central Missouri State University and a Ph.D. in Toxicology from the University of Kansas Medical Center. He's certified in the comprehensive practice of Industrial Hygiene and has been involved in pesticide exposure and risk assessment on a national and international basis for the past 30+ years.