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Golfer exposure to turfgrass pesticides

Raymond A Putnam, University of Massachusetts Amherst


There is great concern over human exposure following the application of pesticides for the management of turf environments. This concern is expected and germane given the level and frequency of pesticide use, the extent of activities and time spent on turfgrass, and the exposure potential for infants, children, and adults alike. Much effort has been expended in the determination of applicator exposure issues and the means to mitigate problematic exposure situations before and during application of pesticides. However, there are potential exposure concerns for all who enter turfgrass areas following pesticide applications. The present research emphasizes dosimetry (measuring pesticide residues on cotton suits, gloves, and air samplers worn by golfers) and biomonitoring (measuring pesticide metabolites in urine of golfers) in conjunction with environmental monitoring to determine transfer and penetration factors. The direct and simultaneous determination of dosimetry and biomonitoring data provides a novel and complete database on how much pesticide is transferred from the treated turf to the golfer during the play of a round of golf, where transfer takes place, and subsequently how much pesticide is actually absorbed. Dermal exposure was determined to be the dominant exposure pathway to golfers. Exposure estimates based on a 1 h re-entry interval following full-course and full-rate applications of chlorpyrifos, carbaryl, and cyfluthrin are substantially below current US EPA acute Reference Dose (Rfd) values, indicating safe exposures. These already low exposures were successfully mitigated using several management strategies.

Subject Area

Toxicology|Sports medicine

Recommended Citation

Putnam, Raymond A, "Golfer exposure to turfgrass pesticides" (2006). Doctoral Dissertations Available from Proquest. AAI3215913.