Take Care When Washing Work Clothes Used Around Pesticides

May 10, 2021
ICM News

Pesticide applicators and handlers need to wear, at a minimum, the Personal Protective Equipment (PPE) specified on pesticide product labels. Most pesticide labels require a long-sleeved shirt and long pants. Proper laundering of work clothes that may be contaminated with pesticide residues is essential to reduce pesticide handlers’ short- and long-term exposure to pesticides and prevent the potential of residue cross-contamination onto other clothing. 

Many pesticide labels provide limited instructions for cleaning work clothes. In situations where no instructions are provided, the following are guidelines for caring for and laundering pesticide contaminated clothing. A downloadable publication, Laundering Pesticide-contaminated Work Clothes, provides additional, more detailed information.

Links to this article are strongly encouraged, and this article may be republished without further permission if published as written and if credit is given to the author, Integrated Crop Management News, and Iowa State University Extension and Outreach. If this article is to be used in any other manner, permission from the author is required. This article was originally published on May 10, 2021. The information contained within may not be the most current and accurate depending on when it is accessed.

Author: 

Elizabeth Danielson Extension Program Specialist III

Betsy Danielson is an extension program specialist for Iowa State University Extension and Outreach. She is part of the Pesticide Safety Education Program (PSEP), conducts pesticide applicator training focusing on seed treatment and fumigation, and develops resource materials for e...