Bickett Donner Helms Detasseling

Worker Protection

Standard -- WPS

The Worker Protection Standard is a regulation issued by the US Environmental Protection Agency, related to pesticides used in the production of agricultural crops and the protection of workers and handlers who may be exposed to those pesticides.
•Normal agricultural practices include applying crop protection products to the crop to control weeds, insects, or plant disease. In order to prevent injury and minimize pesticide exposure(by breathing, swallowing, or physical contact), Pioneer fields receive pesticide applications only when necessary and with the safest possible product. Employees are not allowed to enter fields that have recently received a pesticide application until the restricted-entry interval (REI) has lapsed.

•Wyffels Hybrid complies with the Federal Worker Protection Standard (WPS) that requires all workers to receive training on pesticide safety procedures when they begin work. You must receive this training and sign a safety sheet to document this training.
•Each field has a posting method to list all of the chemicals applied to the field during the past 30 days, and a pesticide safety poster that lists the address and telephone number of a nearby emergency medical facility. Wyffels Hybrid also has a Hazard Communication Program, which includes Material Safety Data Sheets on any pesticides applied to seed fields. The program and Material Safety Data Sheets are available to all field workers for review.

The WPS Pesticide Field Sign is one that folds into an “open” or “closed” position and is located at the primary field entrance to the seed field to provide notice of pesticide application.  Do not enter fields if the sign says to “Keep Out” 

The Primary Field Entrance is the field entry point most often used to enter the field.  Some fields may have other approved entry points, but it is critical that you check the primary entrance and the WPS field sign.

•Another WPS requirement is to provide workers a decontamination site for washing off pesticide residues.  Your supervisor will be able to tell you where that is.

For crews of eleven or more, portable toilets are provided for your use. Wash water, soap, and towels will be provided. It is important to wash your hands:
•    Before eating 
•    Both before and after using the portable toilets

Drink water frequently, particularly during hot days, since it minimizes the potential for heat-related stress and dehydration.  Water provided to crew members will come from a certified source.