The likelihood of Salinas children being exposed to pesticides sprayed in fields near their schools will lessen starting Jan. 1 due to new regulations adopted by the California Department of Pesticide Regulation this week.
Under the new regulation, applications via aircraft, air-blast sprayers, sprinklers and fumigants will be prohibited during school hours between 6 a.m. and 6 p.m. Monday through Friday, within a quarter of a mile from public K-12 schools as well as licensed day-care facilities.
Powder and dust applications, including sulfur, are also prohibited during these hours.
Maria Godoy has a child that attends Gavilan View Middle School, which sits just outside agriculture fields off Russell Road, and she said pesticides is something she thinks about from time to time.
“It’s something that the county, or whoever is responsible to ensure the safety of our children, (needs to) understand that the school is placed in an area where there is pesticides and that they take the safety precautions for them,” said Godoy. “There’s wind, there’s everything people might say is not affecting the children, but at the end of the day, I think it is.”