WASHINGTON -- The Environmental Protection Agency has reached agreement for the phaseout of a widely used pesticide, diazinon, because of its potential health risks to children, agency sources said Tuesday.
The chemical, used in household ant and roach sprays and in a wide range of garden and lawn sprays, is among a class of chemicals known as organophosphates which attack the nervous system and are believed to pose special threats to children, even at low doses.
Under an agreement scheduled to be announced by the EPA later Tuesday the use of diazinon will be banned for use indoors and will be phased out over a four-year period for outdoor lawn and garden applications, a source familiar with the proposal said, speaking on condition of anonymity.
The insecticide is commonly found on the shelves of hardware and lawn and garden shops under trade names such as Ortho, Spectracide and Real-Kill.
The chemical's manufacturer has maintained that the insecticide poses no health risks with normal application as instructed on the product packages.
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