Washington State University
Environmental Health & Safety EH&S Factsheets

Restricted Entry after Pesticide Applications:

The First 30 Days in Agricultural Fields


Restricted Worker Entry During an REI is Allowed:

For Short-Term Activities:

  • Short-term activities include operating, moving, or repairing irrigation/ watering equipment or performing crop advisor tasks. Activities not allowed include hand labor and tasks that require substantial contact with surfaces directly or indirectly treated with pesticides.
  • Entry cannot occur until 4 hours after pesticide application is completed. Inhalation exposure level must also be below those listed on the pesticide label.
  • Entry can be for no more than 1 hour every 24 hours.
  • PPE must be worn as specified for early entry on the pesticide label and as required by WAC 296-307-12020 (3).
  • Proper decontamination supplies must be available. Requirements are listed in the EH&S fact sheet Preparedness and Planning.
  • Appropriate measures are to be taken to prevent heat-related illnesses. Please see the EH&S fact sheet Heat-Related Illnesses.
  • Worker Protection Standard (WPS) training, Hazard Communication Standard (HCS) training, and posted pesticide information must be provided prior to entry into treated areas.
  • Transportation to a nearby medical facility must be readily available should a pesticide-related poisoning or injury occur.

For Agricultural Emergency Conditions:

  • An agricultural emergency is determined by the Washington State Department of Agriculture, and does not include day-to-day situations. Agricultural emergencies are defined in the WAC 296-307-12020 (4).
  • Entry cannot occur until 4 hours after pesticide application is completed.
  • Entry is allowed to perform any task that will mitigate the emergency, tasks can include hand labor tasks and can exceed 1 hour in a 24 hour period.
  • All other requirements listed for short term activities must be followed as well.
  • A record must be completed within 24 hours of early entry that includes: the date; start and end time of emergency period; reason for emergency; crop site; pesticide name, EPA #, and REI; name of early entry individual, the date, time, and exit of entry; and the estimated potential economic loss if early entry did not occur.
  • Records must be maintained for 7 years and made available upon request.

For Activities with No Contact:

  • Conditions of “no contact” are no contact with anything treated with a pesticide including but not limited to: soil; water; plant surfaces (including orchard grass); or air (inhalation exposure levels must be below those listed on the pesticide label for early entry).
  • Standard protective clothing must be worn for entry.
  • WPS and HCS training, and posted pesticide application information must be provided prior to entry.

For Crop Advisors and the Employees They Supervise:

  • Entry is allowed for crop advisor tasks. These do not include hand labor.
  • Entrants must be certified or licensed as Crop advisors or be supervised by one.
  • A Crop Advisor must be readily available to supervised employees performing crop advisor tasks.
  • Entrants not certified or licensed must have WPS and HCS training and be informed of posted pesticide application information.
  • Use of proper PPE and having the necessary decontamination supplies on hand is required for entry.

For Pesticide Handlers:

  • Entry is allowed any time and for any activity if all pesticide label application handler requirements are met.

Worker Entry During the Period 30 Days After the REI has Expired is Allowed When:

  • Standard protective clothing is worn.
  • Proper decontamination supplies are available.
  • WPS and HCS training, and posted pesticide application information is provided prior to entry.
  • Transportation to medical facilities is readily available.
  • Other WPS worker requirements are met.

Worker Entry into a Treated Area Where a Pesticide, Without a Label Specified REI, Has Been Applied:

  • Refer to section for entry 30 days after REI expires. Entry requirements are the same.

Warning Signs and Application Information For Pesticide Treated Areas:

  • Check the pesticide application postings to know where treated areas are, what pesticides have been applied, what REI is in effect, and other entry requirements such as PPE needed.
  • Entry warning signs can be found at points of access, orchard or plot corners, or any other place with high visibility.
  • Application information will be in the location specified for the posting of pesticide safety information. This information will be posted for 30 days after the pesticide REI is over or for 30 days after the application if the pesticide has no REI.
  • The following information will be listed regarding the pesticide application: the location and description of the treated area; the product name; EPA registration number; active ingredient(s) of the pesticide; the time and date of the pesticide application; and the REI for the pesticide.

Entering Private/Commercial Grower Treated Areas:

  • Employees must follow all early entry and WPS requirements when entering any private or commercial grower treated areas.
  • Information regarding pesticide application, any applicable REI’s in effect, and the location of information postings should be obtained from your supervisor when planning field work off-station.


  • “Worker” refers to any employee performing activities related to the production of agricultural plants, and is not a pesticide applicator or crop advisor.
  • “Restricted Entry Interval” (REI) means the period after the end of a pesticide application during which entry into the treated area is restricted as specified on the pesticide label.
  • “Pesticide” refers to any substance or mixture of substances intended to prevent, destroy, control, repel, or mitigate any insect, rodent, snail, slug, fungus, weed, or plant virus. These include, but are not limited to, herbicides, insecticides, fungicides, rodenticides, adjuvants, thinners, plant regulators, and defoliants.
  • “Hand Labor” is agricultural activity performed by hand or hand tools and can include, but not limited to: harvesting, detasseling, thinning, weeding, topping, planting, pruning, disbudding, roguing, and packing produce in the field.
  • “Standard Protective Clothing” protects the body from pesticide residues and includes: long-sleeved shirt; long pants; gloves; hat or scarf; socks; and shoes.

Getting Assistance

Contact EH&S if you have any questions about restricted entry after pesticide application during the first 30 days in agricultural fields.

Initial Application Non-restricted activity for pesticides without an REI  
4 hour
24 hour
48 hour
72 hour
3 day
7 day
30 days post applications
or REI
Restricted activity for pesticides with a
Restricted Entry Interval (REI)