Pesticide Warning Signs

Pesticide warning signs must alert people about pesticide use. The case is that pesticides can bear numerous health dangers. The Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) established special requirements for pesticide warning signs. The EPA demands that pesticide warning signs must warn agricultural workers and other people about pesticide applications. Any pesticide warning sign must be visible, readable, and of the required dimensions.

Requirements for pesticide warning signs

Pesticide warning signs must be in English and Spanish. In case of need other language instead of Spanish may be used. Pesticide warning signs must be at 14 inches by 16 inches. The letters of the inscription must be no less than 1 inch high. EPA permits the use of a smaller pesticide warning signs in greenhouses because the standard signs may restrict the working operations.

The pesticide warning sign must contain a circle with a raised hand and a stern face. The inside of the circle is red. The hand and face contrast with the red background color.

Useful information on pesticide warning signs

Pesticide users must understand the meanings of the terms on pesticide warning signs.

  • Toxicity of a pesticide is the ability to be poisonous. Toxicity depends on chemical and physical properties. LD50 rates the toxicity. The LD50 is measured in mg/kg of body weight of the test animals that is lethal for 50 % of these animals. The smaller is LD50, the more toxic is the pesticide.
  • Hazard of pesticide depends on toxicity, dose, and time of exposure.
  • Risk depends on handling the product. The risk is diminished if the worker wears protective clothing and uses protective equipment. It is possible to control the risk by careful management of hazard.

Warning symbols

Warning symbols show the damage that can result from misapplication or mismanagement of pesticides. They warn the user about the level of hazard by means of the border shape and about the type of hazard by means of image in the center.

Poisonous symbol


Skull and cross bones warn that the pesticide is poisonous if it gets into the body. Such products must be kept out of reach of children. It is necessary to use suitable safety measures working with poisonous products.

Flammable symbol


Flame warns that the pesticide is inflammable. The pesticide must be kept away from heat, sparks, or fire. Smoking is forbidden when mixing or applying these pesticides.

Explosive symbol


Exploding grenade shows that the pesticide can explode.

Corrosive symbol


Corroded hand shows that the compound can burn the skin and eyes. It is necessary to protect the skin and eyes working with these products.

Toxicity symbols

Toxicity symbols associate oral LD50 in mg/kg of a pesticide with its toxicity.

Danger poison symbol

Danger Poison

LD50 less than 500 mg/kg shows high toxicity.

Warning poison symbol

Warning Poison

LD50 500 to 1,000 mg/kg shows moderate toxicity.

Caution poison symbol

Caution Poison

LD50 1,000 to 2,000 mg/kg shows low toxicity.
LD50 greater than 2,500 mg/kg shows very low toxicity.

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