Background: Studies to assess pesticide exposure of individuals living in agricultural settings suggest that farmworkers create a "take-home" pathway from the fields to the home that increases exposure risk for non-farmworker household members.
Methods: A survey was conducted with 142 Latino women in farmworker family households in North Carolina to identify predictors of adherence to pesticide safety behaviors that may affect take-home exposure risk. Behaviors included changing work clothes before entering the house, storing and washing contaminated work clothes separately from family clothing, and showering upon returning home.
Results: The number of farmworkers in the household was negatively associated with adherence to recommended changing, storing, and showering behaviors. Most workers followed recommended laundry procedures for work clothes.
Conclusions: Results support existing evidence for a take-home pathway for pesticide residues in homes with several farmworkers. Pesticide safety education needs to reinforce behaviors that reduce take-home exposure in farmworker households.
Copyright 2006 Wiley-Liss, Inc.