This study involved a survey of the main pesticides and the procedures of work safety adopted on small and medium-size farms in the area of Araras, Brazil. For collection of data, 60 rural producers were interviewed. The questionnaire consisted of 25 questions distributed in three basic blocks concerning general aspects of the main crops cultivated in the area, the handling of pesticides, use of individual equipment protection and occurrence of intoxications. The results show that there is a lack of care with work safety, since only 63% of the interviewees use complete standard individual equipment protection (cap, mask, gloves and boots) and 22.2% do not use any type of protection. In relation to the use of pesticides it was verified that 51.9% of the interviewees store these products in a nonexclusive structure, thus allowing for the possible contact of the toxins with other agricultural products. In regard to the intoxications, 3.7% of the interviewees reported already having suffered intoxication by pesticides. These results demonstrate a lack of training in the use of agricultural pesticides, evidencing a need for improvement in the level of information among the farmers in relation to the importance of the use of protection equipment and measures aimed at reducting the risks of intoxication.
Toxicity; safety; environment