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Consumer WARNING - Unregistered Pesticide Products!

Consumers should use caution when buying pest control products. EPA exempts a number of products called "25b" pesticides from registration. Many of these products lack sufficient safety and use information. Many are marketed with false and misleading claims. Avoid buying from door-to-door, online, or telephone sellers. When shopping in your local store, make sure any product you buy has a EPA Registration Number on the label. With bed bugs, brown-marmorated stinkbugs, and Asian lady beetles affecting our daily lives, we are seeing more "snake-oil" products. If in doubt, contact your local Extension agent for assistance.

Honeybee Swarm Removal

With the domestic honeybee in a worldwide health crisis, pesticides are even less of an acceptable option to dealing with swarms around the home. More and more local beekeeper organizations are offering swarm removal as a public service. The Virginia State Beekeepers Association has a link to most local beekeeper organizations in Virginia.

Consumer Applicators

Homeowner applicator.

Consumers use "general" use pesticides in and around their own homes and gardens in their daily activities. This is non-occupational pesticide use, does not require certification, and involves the use of home and garden products that are available in consumer retail channels.


There are a variety of educational resources available to help consumers use pesticides safely and/or learn about alternatives to the use of pesticides. Other resources help consumers gain knowledge about common pests and pest control associated with our daily lives and environment.


What happens if you or a member of your family is exposed to or poisoned by a pesticide?

Pesticide poisonings can occur through careless handling, through accidental ingestion, and by contact with treated surfaces, containers, and application equipment. Many accidents can be prevented by careful handling, storage, and selection of safer products. Never store or leave pesticides where children, uninformed adults, or pets can contact them. Never leave a sprayer unattended or allow others to enter a treated area until the sprayed area is safe to reenter according to the label instructions.

Follow these directions if an exposure occurs

  • Follow the first aid recommendations on the label. Often quick action on the scene can do more to help a victim than can be done by waiting for emergency personnel to arrive. Remember, the first aid instructions are usually directed to the layman at the scene. Your response to these recommendations could save a life or prevent long-term injury. This is especially important when chemicals splash into the eyes—fast action to rinse out an eye during the first 15-20 minutes can prevent possible permanent damage. One word of caution—be careful to avoid exposure to yourself when handling a poisoned victim.
  • Call your physician immediately. If your family physician is not available, the patient should be taken to the nearest physician or hospital emergency room along with the container of the poisoning agent (pesticide container with the intact label). Make sure you put the container in a plastic bag and warn all emergency personnel of the situation to protect them from possible exposure to the pesticide on the victim, the container, or at the site.
  • If necessary, the physician will call the nearest poison control center for further information on the suspected poisoning agent, treatment, and prognosis.
  • If you have questions specific to a possible poisoning, you can call a Poison Control Center for information. Please refer to the list below for Poison Control Centers and other emergency contacts.

Poison Information and Treatment Resources For Virginians

Regional Poison Control Centers

Provide 24-hour information and consultation services by poison information specialists and board-certified medical toxicologists. Located in hospitals equipped for all toxicologic (poison) emergencies.




Blue Ridge Poison Center

1222 Jefferson Park Ave.

Charlottesville, VA 22908

(800) 222-1222

Virginia Poison Center

VCU Medical Center
Virginia Commonwealth University Health System
1250 East Marshall St.P.O. Box 980522
Richmond, VA 23298-0522
(800) 222-1222



National Capital Poison Center

3201 New Mexico Ave., 

NWSuite 310

Washington, DC 20016

(800) 222-1222



West Virginia Poison Center

Robert C. Byrd Health Sciences Center

3110 MacCorkle Ave., 

S.E.Charleston, WV 25304

(800) 222-1222


Carolinas Poison Center

Carolinas Medical Center

P.O. Box 3286

14400 Golf Acres Dr.

Bldg. J, B-2 

Charlotte, NC 28232-2861

(800) 222-1222

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Who to Call

For local assistance with consumer pest management and pesticide questions:

EPA Lawn & Garden Page

The EPA Lawn and Garden page provides a number of features of benefit to the average consumer and homeowner. This includes a series of videos to encourage homeowners and communities to adopt healthy lawn care practices as a means of reducing pesticide risk to human health and the environment.

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