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Inspectors watching pesticide applications

ACROSS MISSISSIPPI — The Mississippi Department of Agriculture and Commerce is urging farmers to practice extreme caution when making pesticide applications this spring when especially high winds increase the chance of pesticide drift.

Applicators are reminded to pay close attention to wind speed, direction, and the distance to neighboring crops and other sensitive areas before spraying.

In the interest of public and environmental safety, Bureau of Plant Industry inspectors are actively patrolling the state to monitor pesticide applications. Individuals who are observed spraying in high winds or in a negligent manner will be cited. Penalties for these negligent applications can be up to $5,000 per violation.

Current state regulations prohibit aerial applicators from making any herbicide applications in winds exceeding 10 miles per hour and require individuals utilizing ground spray equipment to follow wind restrictions as indicated on the pesticide label.

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