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Environ Sci Technol. 2006 Oct 15;40(20):6269-74.

Pesticide measurements from the first national environmental health survey of child care centers using a multi-residue GC/MS analysis method.

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National Exposure Research Laboratory, U.S. Environmental Protection Agency, MD-E20504, Research Triangle Park, North Carolina 27709, USA.


The U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development, in collaboration with the U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission and the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency, characterized the environments of young children (<6 years) by measuring lead, allergens, and pesticides in a randomly selected nationally representative sample of licensed institutional child care centers. Multi-stage sampling with clustering was used to select 168 child care centers in 30 primary sampling units in the United States. Centers were recruited into the study by telephone interviewers. Samples for pesticides, lead, and allergens were collected at multiple locations in each center by field technicians. Field sampling was conducted from July through October 2001. Wipe samples from indoor surfaces (floors, tabletops, desks) and soil samples were collected at the centers and analyzed using a multi-residue GC/MS analysis method. Based on the questionnaire responses, pyrethroids were the most commonly used pesticides among centers applying pesticides. Among the 63% of centers reporting pesticide applications, the number of pesticides used in each center ranged from 1 to 10 and the frequency of use ranged from 1 to 107 times annually. Numerous organophosphate and pyrethroid pesticides were detected in the indoor floor wipe samples. Chlorpyrifos (0.004-28 ng/cm2), diazinon (0.002-18 ng/cm2), cis-permethrin (0.004-3 ng/cm2), and.

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