Assignment: Risk Assessment
Due Date: 02/12/2011
Instructor: Dr. Jensen
Malathion is an organophosphate insecticide; it is used to control certain insect population like
boll weevil, med fly ,and mosquitoes. Applications of malathion has been used on the ground or
sprayed in the air when trying to get rid on adult mosquitoes associated with West Nile Virus.
(ATSDR 2001). When using malathion by ground or spraying the EPA says it has a relatively low
toxicity to humans, other mammals and birds when comparing the chemical to other
organophosphate insecticides.(EPA2000 ab) However because of the danger it imposes on
aquatic organisms direct application to bodies of water is avoided. There are four important
factors one should take inconsideration before using malathion as a solution to the mosquitoes’
and West Nile Virus problem.
Hazard identification: The chemical Malathion does have negative side effects for humans and
Dose-response: Depending on the amount of Malathion ingested the symptoms
can vary from mild to moderate or severe poisoning, results can be life threatening.
Exposure: Water pH level over 5 percent causes negative effects to aquatic animals, and plants.
Malathion degrades rapidly in the environment when used by spraying or ground applications.
Risk characterization: The ATSDR has developed several risk levels concerning the gestation of
malathion. Testing done on humans and animals with an uncertainty factor used, to determine
what level of contamination is a risk.
Using these proposed values for the risk assessments for public health mosquito uses, EPA
(2000d) concluded that the risk estimates for adults and toddlers for combined dermal and
Inhalation exposure did not exceed EPA’s levels of concern for residential bystander inhalation
and dermal exposure from truck fogger and aerial ULV mosquito-control applications. This
assessment included... [continues]
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