Basseterre, St. Kitts, September 27, 2016 (SKNIS): The Government is currently urging the Pesticides Board to pay keen attention to managing the risks of vector borne diseases so as to protect citizens, as well as the environment.
Minister of Health, Honourable Eugene Hamilton, said that “there is no doubt that the use of chemicals resolves many issues related to pest control.”
“In public health, vector borne diseases, such as Chikungunya and Zika, can be brought under control through judicious application of chemicals to breeding grounds of the mosquito,” explained the Minister. “However, there is also no doubt, that these chemicals can cause significant damage to humans and to the environment through long term exposure or ingestion.” Hence, there is need for the Pesticides Board to pay close attention.
The Minister said that one of the major activities under the Pesticide Control Act is to monitor the type, storage, distribution, labelling and use of pesticides in St. Kitts & Nevis. He said that handlers and service providers are routinely exposed and at increased risk.
Minister Hamilton added that proper storage is important to prevent spills, leakages and evaporation in the workplace, on farms and in homes; and equally important are the types of clothing worn and heeding to precautionary measures.
He cautioned the public to store pesticides away from food and water for both humans and other mammals; keep rooms and stores well ventilated to dispel noxious fumes; keep pesticides in their original containers with proper labels; ensure that all pesticides are placed in locked or secured cabinets away from children; and post clear indicators or signs on storage facilities, cabinets and containers.