Objectives: This study assessed acute hazards to young children from pesticides toxic enough to require child-resistant packaging.
Methods: The names of pesticides meeting acute toxicity criteria were ascertained from the Environmental Protection Agency. Poison Control Center reports identified children younger than 6 years who were exposed to these pesticides. Toxicity category, medical outcome, sex, and age were examined.
Results: A higher proportion of children with exposure to the more toxic products had serious medical outcomes. Children 2 years and younger were the predominant age group exposed.
Conclusions: Protective measures--substituting less lethal pesticides, reducing the concentration of the active ingredients, and improving packaging and storage--are recommended.