A mail survey of Iowa greenhouse pesticide applicators was conducted in 1992 to establish benchmark data concerning use of personal protective equipment (PPE), safety attitudes, and experience with pesticide-related illness symptoms before the implementation of the Worker Protection Standard for Agricultural Pesticides. A 72% response rate provided 185 observations revealing that 79% were employees of firms, but the remaining 21% were self-employed. Hypotheses of difference in use of P PE between the self-employed and employees of firms were not confirmed except with relation to use of regular work gloves, disposable coveralls, and boots. Applicators' clothing was reported to meet pesticide label requirements. Few applicators reported acute or chronic health effects associated with pesticide use, and no differences we refound between the employees and the self-employed. Most (72%) employees decided when to replace their uniforms. This' study demonstrated that greenhouse applicators want further information about PPE and need education about its laundering and storage.
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