DEAR ABBY: It happened again! Someone put pesticide in a water bottle. A 6-year-old child got ahold of it and drank about 2 ounces. He is now on a ventilator in a pediatric intensive care unit. Having made it that far, he'll probably be OK. Why do people keep doing this?
I can't tell you how many sad stories I've seen that start with using a sports bottle, a soft drink can or a milk bottle for temporary pesticide storage. I would like very much never to see another, but my chances are not good. It is my job to track health impacts from pesticide exposure in the state where I live -- where state law requires doctors to report such events to local health officers.
Please remind your readers to keep pesticides -- and other toxic products -- in their original, carefully labeled containers. Under no circumstances should people use food or drink containers for poisons, even momentarily. Please remind readers, too, not to use more pesticide than the instructions direct. The recommended amounts are effective, and using more just asks for trouble. Thank you, Abby. -- CONCERNED HEALTH WORKER IN THE USA
DEAR CONCERNED: Thank you for the important reminder. The most innocent among us are the most likely victims of irresponsibility in handling toxic substances. A word to the wise!