Mon | Jan 18, 2021

Exercise caution when using insecticides

Published:Wednesday | October 29, 2014 | 12:00 AM

The Pesticides Control Authority (PCA) is urging persons to exercise caution when using insecticides to get rid of vectors, including mosquitoes, as efforts continue to control the spread of the chikungunya virus.

Registrar of the PCA, Michael Ramsay, said that while insecticides are effective in getting rid of unwanted pests, overuse can lead to serious health complications.

"Insect spray is designed to kill, and if overused, it can cause health problems, especially for persons with respiratory issues," he said.

In addition to the health risks associated with overuse of insecticides, Ramsay said that, over time, "insects get resistant to particular chemicals and they are not effective".


However, this is not applicable to the chemical DEET, contained in some mosquito repellents. This is because "the repellent is designed to keep mosquitoes off [persons] rather than get inside of the mosquitoes to kill them," explained Ramsay.

The registrar is also warning against the use of illegal mosquito coils, as "there are concerns over whether [they] could be a health hazard to persons."

Illegal mosquito coils are black, while the legal mosquito coils are green.

For more information on the proper use of insecticides, the public may contact the Pesticides Control Authority at 967-1100-7.