- Pesticides and herbicides are designed to be toxic to pests and can harm birds, fish, pets and humans if misused.
- If lawn chemicals, pesticides or herbicides are used in larger doses than recommended on the label, runoff can have an adverse effect on drinking water supplies and the environment.
- Avoid buying more product than you need, as it is likely to become waste at a later date.
- Store pesticides in original containers that are closed and labeled, in a secure area out of reach of children and pets. Avoid storing pesticides in damp areas where containers may become moist or rusty. Pesticides should NOT be stored near food.
- Follow label instructions strictly about where and how much to apply.
- Do NOT put pesticides in the trash or down the drain.
- Use rubber gloves when handling pesticides and use an appropriate cartridge mask if using products extensively.
- Do NOT use or give away banned pesticides or pesticides that are no longer registered for use. To find out whether a product is no longer registered for use in Massachusetts, contact the Department of Agricultural Resources Pesticide Program .
- For questions on specific pesticides and environmentally friendly products and procedures, such as Integrated Pest Management, contact the state Pesticide Bureau.
- For more information on identifying pesticides, their health hazards, and use and management guidelines, contact the National Pesticide Information Center at 800-858-7378.
Banned or Unregistered Pesticides:
- If the pesticide is banned or no longer registered for use, save in original container for the next household hazardous waste collection day.
- If the product is still registered for use, use up according to directions on the label or donate it to a friend or neighbor who can use it.
- If you no longer have a use for the product and are not able to give it away, save it for a hazardous household waste collection day or take to a commercial hazardous waste facility.
- Do NOT recycle or reuse pesticide containers.
- Empty containers should be triple rinsed and then disposed of in the trash. Take the following steps to triple rinse a container:
- Fill the empty pesticide container with cold water and use the rinse water as if it were full-strength product, in accordance with the label instructions.
- Repeat this procedure two more times.
- Do NOT pour rinse water down the drain.
- Once the container is empty and triple rinsed, it should be wrapped in newspaper and disposed of in the trash.
- Do NOT triple rinse containers for banned or unregistered pesticides. Save these for the next household hazardous waste collection day.