Household Pesticides

Common Household Pesticide Banned

The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) has announced an agreement with the manufacturer of Dursban to eliminate the pesticide for nearly all household purposes. This insecticide, also known as chlorpyrifos, is one of the most common ingredients in home, lawn, and garden bug killers. Dursban has been widely used for more than 30 years in agriculture and in products used by exterminators and homeowners. The agreement will halt the manufacture of Dursban by December 2000 for residential uses. It will also require that all of the residential uses be deleted from existing product labels prior to that time.

The pesticide sales and use ban were primarily due to concerns for human health effects, especially the potential effects on children. The EPA found that chlorpyrifos causes weakness, vomiting, diarrhea, and other symptoms in children. Children and adults can be exposed when the chemical is applied in a yard or building and through residues on fruits or other foods.

Among the hundreds of products containing Dursban are: 

  • Black Flag Liquid Roach and Ant Killer
  • Black Flag Roach Control System
  • Hartz 330 Day Flea and Tick Collar for Dogs
  • Ortho Home Pest Insect Control
  • Ortho Lawn Insect Spray
  • Raid Ant Controller, Raid Home Insect Killer Formula II
  • Raid Liquid Roach and Ant Killer Formula I
  • Raid Max Roach Bait III
  • Scotts Proturf Insect Control Plus Fertilizer
  • Sergeant's Fast-Acting Flea and Tick Collar for Dogs
  • Sergeant's Flea and Tick Collar

Some large retail stores are taking steps in reaction to the ban. Wal-Mart will stop selling products with Dursban at the end of October 2000 and Home Depot has planned to post signs identifying alternatives.

Current Supply of Dursban Products

Homeowners can take the products to the Winona County Household Hazardous Waste Facility at 225 West 2nd Street in Winona for proper disposal.

Businesses should arrange to send the products back to their supplier.

It is very important that people do not pour this chemical down the drain or put it in the trash. EPA advises consumers that short-term use of these products, according to label instructions, does not pose an imminent risk.

If you have any questions regarding Dursban, please contact Winona County Household Hazardous Waste at 507-457-6462.

Potential Health Risks to Children

In December 2000, the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) reached an agreement for the phase-out of the widely used pesticide called Diazinon because of its potential health risks to children. The chemical used in household ant and roach sprays and in a wide range of garden and lawn sprays is among a class of chemicals that attack the nervous system and are believed to pose special threats to children, even at low doses. The insecticide is commonly found on the shelves of hardware and lawn and garden shops under trade names such as Ortho, Spectracide, and Real-Kill.

Diazinon is one of 45 pesticides known as organophosphates, which have been under special review by the EPA for more than four years because of their potential health effects on children, including their impact on neural development. It is one of the several widely used pesticides that the EPA has restricted or banned as part of its review of organophosphates.

Residents can dispose of products containing Diazinon at the Winona County Household Hazardous Waste Facility located at 225 West 2nd Street in Winona. If these products cannot be brought to the collection facility soon, the product should be sealed in a plastic bag, labeled, and put in a safe place out of the reach of children.

If you have any questions concerning Diazinon, please call Winona County Household Hazardous Waste at 507-457-6462