Six companies fined for pesticide violations from August incident in Bakersfield

BAKERSFIELD, Calif. - Six companies were fined for pesticide violations from an incident that occurred back in August in southwest Bakersfield, according to notices served by the Kern County Agricultural Commissioner. 

The companies were fined nearly $50,000 for 11 different violations from the pesticide drift that happened earlier this year, which impacted nearly 100 farm workers. Tasteful Selection, the grower, was fined $42,000. 

Some of the violations included aerial application of a California Restricted Material within 1/4 mile of a residential area, failure to provide medical care to afflicted workers as required by law, failure to provide 24-hour notice prior to use, and failure to provide respiratory equipment. 

The pesticide drift incident back in August involved two highly hazardous pesticides, the soil fumigant metam sodium and chlorpyrifos. 

The farm workers impacted were harvesting garlic in a nearby field when they were exposed to the drift. More than 90 workers experienced skin and eye irritation, nausea, and headache. 

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