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Pesticide aerial applicator fined $4,160 for allowing pesticide to drift onto Arizona residence

Release Date: 9/19/2005
Contact Information: Wendy L. Chavez, (415) 947-4248,

SAN FRANCISCO -- The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency today fined an aerial pesticide applicator $4,160 after he applied two pesticides and allegedly allowed them to drift onto a residential property in Casa Grande, Ariz.

During an aerial application to control insect pests on cotton, Crop First Aviation Inc. president and pilot, Christopher Carranza, allowed pesticides Endosulfan 3EC and Intruder to drift onto a nearby residence adjacent to the field.

Crop DusterThe Arizona Department of Agriculture began investigating when a resident alleged that the pesticide drift caused the fish in his pond to die. The case was then referred to the EPA. The EPA determined that the application was made during inappropriate weather conditions, a violation of label instructions.

"Pesticide applicators have a responsibility to apply products in a manner that will not harm public health or the environment," said Enrique Manzanilla, the EPA's Communities and Ecosystems Division director for the Pacific Southwest region. "Federal law requires pesticide applicators to apply registered products according to label instructions, and the EPA will continue to prosecute those who do not use them properly."

The company has received fines from both the EPA and the Arizona Department of Agriculture for similar violations in the past.