Restaurant Safety Outreach – Frequently Asked Questions For Employers

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What is the purpose of the poster?

The poster was created by California's Department of Pesticide Regulation (DPR) to bring awareness on safe use of sanitizers. Data from DPR's Worker Health & Safety Branch (WHS) Pesticide Illness Surveillance Program (PISP) showed that 91% of the products involved in pesticide-related injury/illness at food facilities were sanitizers. *PISP has been collecting pesticide-related illnesses since 1971.

* Based on 673 associated pesticide-related illnesses that occurred at food facilities. 2005-2014 Pesticide Illness Surveillance Program data.

Why is a sanitizer a pesticide?

A pesticide is any substance intended to control, destroy, repel or attract a pest. A sanitizer is a type of pesticide used to kill germs. Products used to kill insects, mold, and rodents are also pesticides.

Is it mandatory for employers to put up the poster?

No, this is voluntary. The goal of this outreach project is to reduce sanitizer and pesticide-related illnesses and injuries in the workplace.

Are employers responsible for providing Personal Protective Equipment (PPE) (e.g., gloves, safety glasses)?

Yes, California employers are required to provide a safe workplace, which includes providing the required personal protective equipment as specified on the product label.

What can employers do if they do not have the PPE or do not understand the hazards of the sanitizer?

Always read the product label before use. The product label contains information on specific PPE requirements, and how to use the sanitizer effectively, safely and legally. Employers must provide and keep in good condition any label required protective equipment.

Are employers required to provide employees training on the safe use of sanitizers?

Yes, Cal/OSHA requires safe and healthful working conditions including protection against chemicals for all California workers.

What authority does DPR have in my facility?

DPR is charged with regulating the sale and use of pesticides in California. Their authority to enforce state and federal laws pertaining to pesticides is passed down to the local County agricultural commissioners (CAC). The CAC investigate reports of pesticide illness to determine the circumstances leading to exposure and if violations of pesticide laws have occurred and take enforcement action when warranted.

Where can I get more posters?

You can download or request more copies of the posters from Restaurant Worker Safety web page. The website also has additional information on sanitizer safety.