Pilot cited after corn detasselers hit with pesticide in Indiana


By: Associated Press

WEST LAFAYETTE, Ind. (AP) — The Office of the Indiana State Chemist has cited the pilot of a crop duster that dropped pesticide and hit more than two dozen agricultural workers in western Indiana in July.

According to a report released Wednesday, the pilot was spraying fungicide on a field neighboring one near Williamsport where corn detasselers were working. The report says some of the chemicals drifted onto the neighboring field.

The (Lafayette) Journal & Courier reports that the detasselers, many of them teenagers, were taken to a hospital to be decontaminated and treated after they were struck by the pesticide. The state chemist’s office found the pilot violated the Indiana Pesticide Use and Application Law and fined him $250.

The pilot flew for Bi-State Helicopters Inc. Owner William Rice says they didn’t know corn detasselers would be working in an adjacent field.