What is WPS and Why is it Important to Pennsylvania?

What does "WPS" mean?

WPS stands for Worker Protection Standard. Enforced by the Environmental Protection Agency, the WPS protects the health and safety of agricultural workers. The goal of WPS is to reduce injury and health risks for people who work with pesticides.

What is the Worker Protection Standard?

WPS requires employers to provide pesticide training that covers the following topics:

  • Pesticide product safety
    • Reading labels
    • Following directions
  • Pesticide application
    • Best health practices during application
    • Restricted Entry Intervals training
    • Posting signage to protect workers from entering areas that have been recently sprayed
  • Use of protective equipment
  • Pesticide handling
  • Decontamination practices

Who needs to comply with the WPS? 

  • Employers at Agricultural or commercial business that handle pesticides, including farms, forests, nurseries, and greenhouses.
  • Employers at Agricultural or commercial business with agricultural workers who work in places sprayed with pesticides within the last 30 days or have high-contact agricultural tasks like weeding, moving irrigation equipment, pruning, and harvesting.

What must I do to comply with the WPS?

You can complete WPS training for all of your employees using an EPA-approved video course.

Certified Training Institute's program comes in English and Spanish and complies with all EPA requirements. The package also presents, tracks and organizes all worker training and documentation.

Upon completion of the video course, employers must also provide access to specific information including:

  • Applications on the establishment
  • Safety data sheets for pesticides applied
  • Poster displays with pesticide safety and emergency information

The online video course breaks down how to do it all. This program makes WPS compliance easy and straightforward. No more worrying about scheduling training, organizing logistics, or tracking records and paperwork, this system does it all. For more information on how you can train your employees, click here.

What happens if I do not comply with WPS?

Worker Protection Standard enforcement has not been widely advertised, however, the repercussions are steep and costly. Training your staff before a problem occurs is a preventative measure that will help you avoid costly lawsuits, medical bills, fines, and save your business’s reputation. Check out this 2 part article for more information "What happens if I don't comply with WPS?"  A farm in Hawaii found out the hard way and was fined a $26,700 penalty for non-compliance.  Don't let this be you!

Do You Employ Workers and Handlers? 

Visit www.wpstraining.us for online, EPA approved, video Worker Protection Standard training programs in English and Spanish.


Online Worker Protection Safety Training (WPS)
Train your workers in Spanish and English!

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What Happens if I Don’t Comply with WPS? Part 2

Part 2 | Read Part 1

As discussed in Part 1, (WPS) is a regulation issued by EPA under the authority of the Federal Insecticide, Fungicide, and Rodenticide Act (FIFRA) to protect agricultural workers from the effects of exposure to pesticides. It covers pesticides that are used in the production of agricultural plants on farms, forests, nurseries, and enclosed spaces. The EPA will begin conducting inspections this year (2018) to determine if those affected by WPS are meeting regulations.

Why are these inspections conducted?

  • Monitoring employer compliance
  • Addressing noncompliance
  • Documenting violations
  • Preventing pesticide misuses and accidental exposure
  • Increasing handler and worker safety

WPS inspections are performed during the significant periods of the agricultural production season, such as:

  • During and after pesticide application
  • During REIs
  • Within 30 days after an REI has expired

Who is required to conduct these inspections?

States and tribes are required to annually report to EPA specific information on WPS agriculture use inspections and enforcement actions. EPA provides guidelines on reporting WPS compliance monitoring and enforcement activities conducted under its  FIFRA Cooperative Agreement program.

Where can I find statistics about non-compliance?

The WPS Pesticide Dashboard provides interactive charts that present a summary of key activities related to the WPS program and answers questions like: how many facilities in the United States employ workers covered by the Worker Protection Standard; how many have been inspected, and how many have violations and enforcement taken by states, tribes or EPA.

WPS inspection and enforcement data from 2005 to 2013
Overview of WPS Violations from 2005 to 2013
The EPA provides a link to ask a question, provide feedback, or report a problem.

I want to be sure I am in compliance with the EPA’s regulations, where can I find a program to train my workers in Spanish and English?

Certified Training Institute offers an EPA APPROVED online Worker Protection Standard (WPS) Training Program (in SPANISH and ENGLISH!) which includes a Handler Training Guide and Tracking System at no extra cost! Train up to 25 employees for just $159 or your entire staff unlimited for only $399.

This is Part 2 of a 2 Part Series. Read Part 1 Here.

Do You Employ Workers and Handlers? 

Visit www.wpstraining.us for online, EPA approved, video Worker Protection Standard training programs in English and Spanish.


More Information on WPS Training

WPS Compliance

$26,700 Penalty For Failure to Meet Worker Protection Standard Requirements

What Happens if I don’t Comply?

Hawaiian Farm Pays $550,000 For Failure to Comply with Worker Protection Standards (WPS)

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What Happens if I Don’t Comply with WPS? Part 1

Part 1 | Read Part 2

Did you know about the EPA’s Worker Protection Standard Compliance Monitoring Program?

The Worker Protection Standard (WPS) is a regulation issued by EPA under the authority of the Federal Insecticide, Fungicide, and Rodenticide Act (FIFRA) to protect agricultural workers from the effects of exposure to pesticides. It covers pesticides that are used in the production of agricultural plants on farms, forests, nurseries, and enclosed spaces. The WPS offers protections to over two million agricultural workers (people involved in the production of agricultural plants) and pesticide handlers (people who mix, load, or apply pesticides) that work at over 600,000 agricultural establishments. The scope of the regulation includes both workers performing hand labor tasks in areas treated with pesticides and those who handle (mix, load, apply, etc.) pesticides in these locations.

When and Where Inspections are Conducted and What They Examine 

EPA staff, states and tribes conduct, routine WPS agricultural-use inspections at agricultural and commercial handling establishments like farms, nurseries, enclosed spaces, and forests to ensure users of pesticides subject to the WPS comply with its requirements.

The inspections involve examining practices of agricultural and handler employers and their employees to assess compliance with:

  • product-specific use requirements and restrictions prescribed on pesticide product labeling, such as:
  • personal protective equipment (PPE),
  • restricted entry intervals (REIs), and
  • oral and posted notification requirements; and
  • generic WPS requirements, such as:
  • worker/handler pesticides safety training,
  • pesticide safety information,
  • decontamination supplies, and
  • emergency assistance.

(source: EPA.gov)

This is Part 1 of a 2 Part Series. Read Part 2 Here.

Do You Employ Workers and Handlers? 

Visit www.wpstraining.us for online, EPA approved, video Worker Protection Standard training programs in English and Spanish.


More Information on WPS Training

WPS Compliance

$26,700 Penalty For Failure to Meet Worker Protection Standard Requirements

Do the New EPA Rules Apply to Me?

Hawaiian Farm Pays $550,000 For Failure to Comply with Worker Protection Standards (WPS)

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