Does the Worker Protection Standard Apply to You? | South Dakota Department of Agriculture

Does the Worker Protection Standard Apply to You?

The Worker Protection Standard applies to you if you are a:

Agricultural Owner

Agricultural Owners are those individuals that presently hold a possessory interest in a farm, ranch, forest, greenhouse or nursery. Certain exemptions to the WPS apply to agricultural owners and their immediate families. The immediate family of an agricultural owner includes, spouse, children, stepchildren, foster children, parents, stepparents, brothers and sisters. However, if you employ persons other than your immediate family, those exemptions do not apply.

Employer of Agricultural Workers

An agricultural worker is anyone who is employed (including self employed) for any type of compensation and is doing tasks such as harvesting, weeding or watering, relating to the production of agricultural plants on a farm, ranch, forest, greenhouse or nursery. It should be noted that the term worker does not apply to persons commercially employed performing tasks as a crop advisor.

Employer of Pesticide Handlers

Pesticide handlers are persons employed (including self-employed) for any type of compensation by an agricultural establishment that uses pesticides in the production of agricultural plants on a farm, ranch, forest, greenhouse or nursery. Pesticide handlers are persons that:

  • Mix, load, transfer or apply pesticides
  • Handle opened containers of pesticides
  • Act as a flagger
  • Clean, handle, adjust or repair pesticide mixing, loading or application equipment
  • Assist with the application of pesticides, including the incorporation of pesticides after they have been applied
  • Enter a greenhouse or other enclosed area after the application and before the inhalation exposure level listed in the production labeling has been reached or one of the WPS ventilation criteria has been met
  • Enter a treated area outdoors after an application of a soil fumigant to adjust or remove coverings
  • Disposes of pesticides or pesticide containers
  • Perform tasks as a crop advisor:
    • During any application; or
    • Before any inhalation exposure level or ventilation criteria listed on the product labeling has been met; or
    • During any restricted-entry interval

Employer of Commercial Pesticide Handlers

Commercial Pesticide Handlers that must comply with the WPS include those that apply pesticides that are used for the production of agricultural plants on any farm, ranch, forest, nursery or greenhouse. The WPS applies to the owner of the business as well as the employees.

Employer of Crop Advisors

If you operate a business that employs individuals (including yourself) that perform tasks as a crop advisor you must comply with the requirements of the WPS. Examples of those persons considered to be a crop advisor include consultants and scouts or anyone that is assessing pest numbers or damage, pesticide distribution or the status, condition or requirements of an agricultural plant.

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