EPA Calls for D-Con Rat Poison Recall Over Safety Issues

In an attempt to protect children from accidental poisoning, government officials announced yesterday they are banning the sale of a popular rat poison product.  

Over the last five years, the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) has worked with rat poison manufacturers to ensure rat poison products on the market are safe, effective and affordable. All but one company has complied with the EPA’s safety standards.

Reckitt Benckiser Inc., the manufacturer of 12 D-Con mouse and rat poison products, has refused to comply with the current EPA safety standards for consumers, the agency claims. As a result, the EPA is banning the products from consumer sale.

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The EPA claims children are at a higher risk of exposure to the poison, since the product is typically placed on floors, where children often play. Side effects of ingesting rat poison products may include internal bleeding, anemia, diarrhea, nausea, dizziness and vomiting.

According to EPA safety standards, rat poisoning products must be enclosed in protective tamper-resistant bait stations. The EPA also prohibits the production and sale of pellets and other bait forms that cannot be secured in bait stations. Other standards prohibit the sale of products containing chemicals which are toxic to wildlife, such as brodifacoum, bromadiolone, difethialone, and difenacoum.

Poison control centers receive approximately 4 million calls each year regarding accidental exposure to poisons. Half of those calls concern children under six years of age. The EPA’s efforts to produce products which are safe for use around children and remain effective follow statistics revealing between 12,000 to 15,000 children under the age of six are exposed to rat poison each year.

Officials expect a significant reduction in rodentcide exposures to children once the 12 D-Con products are removed from the market, considering the product has millions of users each year. Following the implementation of the new standards, the EPA received no reports of children exposed to rat poison from the companies who complied with the standards in 2011.

The products in compliance with the safety standards include Tomcat products manufactured by Bell Laboratories, Chemisco’s products and Assault brand manufactured by PM Resources.

Reckitt Benckiser has 30 days following the ban to request a hearing by an administrative law judge. If the company does not request a hearing the ban will become final.


  • jonathanDecember 24, 2015 at 12:48 pm

    I would EXPECT the parents to BE RESPONSIBLE for proper placement of the product. We had poison at our house and I KNEW it was BAD and not to touch it. Thanks to my wonderful and responsible parents who taught me. If we as a society held the appropriate people accountable for irresponsibility then we would not need the intervention. just saying.

  • jimJuly 7, 2015 at 6:02 pm

    Another example of government intrusion and unnecessary regulation in leu of parental responsibility and proper use of products.

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