HONOLULU, Hawaii (Legal Newsline) — The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) announced March 19 that it has fined Terminix International Co. $168,535 because of allegations the company misused three different restricted-use fumigant pesticides, at four separate locations on the Hawaiian island Kauai.
Terminix, a commercial pesticide applicator, uses Vikane, Profume and Degesch Fumi-Cel while delivering services to consumers. These fumigants are EPA-registered, but must be used in a certain way to protect public health. Before and during fumigation operations in Hawaii, Terminix purportedly failed to follow required label instructions and safety precautions. According to the EPA, the violations occurred at two seed fumigation sites, as well as at residences in Kapaa Shores and Kakaha.
“Access to restricted-use pesticides comes with the responsibility to use particular care in protecting public health,” Alexis Strauss, acting regional administrator for the EPA’s Pacific Southwest Region, said in a statement. “[This] action emphasizes how critical it is for pesticide applicators to follow directions concerning these potentially dangerous fumigants.”
The EPA oversees pesticide use under a mandate given by the Federal Insecticide, Fungicide, and Rodenticide Act, which regulates the sale, distribution and use of pesticides.