need help on pesticide drift complaint

Discussion in 'Pesticide & Herbicide Application' started by fredb, Feb 10, 2009.

  1. fredb

    fredb LawnSite Member
    Messages: 9

    I recieved a complaint yesterday by the state for a neighbor of a customer we have after they smelled the spray form an application i made last June.The state tested the surface of the lawn on the property line and found 2-4d in the amount of 4 parts per million .They determined that it was not from any over spray or from being applied wrong but it was from the pesticide fumes or vapor that can not be controlled by the applicator at all and i was told there was nothing we can do to avoid this From happening.We used a 3 way herbicide with a amime formulation.It was applied in June with 5mph wind and 78 degrees.The law states in Wi that it is illegal to have drift if it causes harm or can conceivable cause harm.The state said that they consider any amount can conceivable cause harm and i am know facing a 753 dollar fine. I feel this is very unfair The product was applied correctly on a great day to spray I did not spray over the property line at all Also after asking how to avoid this in future i was told there was nothing we could do but not spray this customer any more because there would always be fumes or a smell.I would appeciate any advise Should i fight this or what actions i can take or where i coudl find any help with this
  2. mngrassguy

    mngrassguy LawnSite Silver Member
    Messages: 2,167

    Welcome to Lawnsite. What a drag dude. I don't think there is anything you can do now. I would stay away from that customer from now on. Unless Wi has any type of arbitrator for these thing, I would just pay the fine. I can't imagine how anybody could prove or disprove the neighbor didn't spray something themselves, then make the call.

    I hope this doesn't give some "crazies" out there any ideas.
  3. fredb

    fredb LawnSite Member
    Messages: 9

    Thought about that The complaintant was a DNR warden Thats how he knew who to call I am just suprised how long it took the state to contact me over 7 months and i cant believe they consider any amount can cause conceivalbe harm The state rep from the dept of ag said the only way to avoid this is to not spay any lawns were we think someone might complain Also the said any time you spray there are going to be fumes or vapors so every application can be a fine if someone complains it just part of the busniess Also if we just pay the fine and plead no contest and we would get another complaint it will be 1000 dollars Also in our county all offences are printed in the local paper which is bad for busniess
  4. IMAGE

    IMAGE LawnSite Bronze Member
    from midwest
    Messages: 1,134

    I think I would ask for an appeal also. There should be some kind of arbitrator for this. I would go armed with the facts. Also mention it's possible that it was spray from another applicator in the neighborhood possibly the day before, or possibly from the homeowner them self. Make them prove it was your 2-4-d.
  5. myyaz33

    myyaz33 LawnSite Member
    Messages: 67

    I would ask for an appeal as well. At least see if there are any other ways to deal with it. Sounds like bunk to me..

    The problem with making them prove it was yours is they LIKELY already know it was. They probably already have a sample from the neighbors lawn and the lawn you treated that match in chemical make-up. So this could seal your fate if it is all you have to stand on.
  6. fredb

    fredb LawnSite Member
    Messages: 9

    I have a copy of the tests One from the yard i sprayed and one for just the other side of the property line They tested for 2-4d dicamba and mccp levels My question is this the law states drift is illegal if it can conveible cause harm How can they say that any amount at all will cause harm and how can they say it was applied correctly but i am still at fault Also how can they say that any time a herbicide is applied you can be fined for drift because you can not do anything about the smell or fumes If other people who dont believe in using pesticides learn about this every one in our state can be fined at any time how apply them
  7. ted putnam

    ted putnam LawnSite Platinum Member
    Messages: 4,669

    You sure you didn't get in a face off with this guy at the property line and have a screaming match? Surely he's not just got it out for all Lawn Care guys. 4ppm is really "splitting hairs".:confused:
  8. fredb

    fredb LawnSite Member
    Messages: 9

    Never saw or even met the guy or had any words with him at all According to the complaint he filled with the state he could smell the herbicide and thought it would harm his dog so he contacted the state
  9. mngrassguy

    mngrassguy LawnSite Silver Member
    Messages: 2,167

  10. FdLLawnMan

    FdLLawnMan LawnSite Bronze Member
    Messages: 1,242

    I also do business in Wisconsin and have never heard of this. I cannot believe it took this long for them to contact you. How can you possible defend yourself against these tactics. Call DATCP, Department of Trade and Consumer Protection. Usually the state is pretty good to work with. It sounds lie the Warden from the DNR was putting pressure on them to do something.

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