EMSL Analytical -- Residents of Melrose, Minnesota were exposed to heavy doses of harmful pesticides after a crop duster released chemicals onto nearby farms, according to the Huffington Post. The citizens of Melrose claim that the pesticides drifted into their homes through air conditioning vents and sickened them.
Within minutes of exposure, Bonnie Wirts claims her heart began to race, and she struggled to breathe. Nurses at the local hospital remarked that many others were hospitalized with the same symptoms as Bonnie as a result of the pesticide exposure.
In addition to the large plumes of pesticide sprayed by the crop dusters, residents believe they are frequently exposed to low doses of pesticides that drift in their homes and yards throughout the growing season, leaving their air, food, and water contaminated.
Chlorpyrifos has been identified as the pesticide that drifted in Wirtz’s home after it was sprayed on a nearby field. It is just one of the many agricultural chemicals that have recently been detected in communities across the farming region.
Chlorpyrifos has been linked to numerous health issues, including learning disabilities, heart problems, and trouble breathing.
In a study conducted from 2006 to 2009, residents of central Minnesota set up air monitors in an attempt to detect pesticides they inhaled. In May the results were published by Pesticide Action Network, revealing that one or more pesticides were detected in 64% of their air monitors. The most common pesticide identified was chlorothalonil, a potato fungicide, which has been classified by the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) as a possible carcinogen and highly toxic if inhaled.
“Those in the agricultural sector and residents living in farming communities may need to analyze environmental samples from their land to determine exactly what chemicals have been applied,” states Michael Chapman, EMSL Analytical, Inc.’s Chemistry Laboratory Manager. “EMSL provides testing services for pesticides (including chlorothalonil and chlorpyrifos), herbicides, and other chemicals in environmental samples.”
“Moreover, we are one of the leading indoor air quality labs in the country and can determine what compounds workers and residents are breathing with accuracy and speed,” he continued.
About EMSL Analytical, Inc.
EMSL Analytical is a nationally recognized and locally focused provider of environmental, industrial hygiene and consumer product testing services and products to professionals and the general public. The company has an extensive list of accreditations from leading organizations as well as state and federal regulating bodies.