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    IPCS INTERNATIONAL PROGRAMME ON CHEMICAL SAFETY
    Health and Safety Guide No. 39

    MIREX
    HEALTH AND SAFETY GUIDE






    UNITED NATIONS ENVIRONMENT PROGRAMME

    INTERNATIONAL LABOUR ORGANISATION

    WORLD HEALTH ORGANIZATION




    WORLD HEALTH ORGANIZATION, GENEVA 1990

    This is a companion volume to Environmental Health Criteria 44: Mirex

    Published by the World Health Organization for the International
    Programme on Chemical Safety (a collaborative programme of the United
    Nations Environment Programme, the International Labour Organisation,
    and the World Health Organization)

    This report contains the collective views of an international group of
    experts and does not necessarily represent the decisions or the stated
    policy of the United Nations Environment Programme, the International
    Labour Organisation, or the World Health Organization

    WHO Library Cataloguing in Publication Data Mirex : health and safety
    guide.

   (Health and safety guide ; no. 39)

   1. Mirex - standards     I. Series

   ISBN 92 4 151039 0          (NLM Classification: WA 240)
   ISSN 0259-7268

    (c) World Health Organization 1990

    Publications of the World Health Organization enjoy copyright
    protection in accordance with the provisions of Protocol 2 of the
    Universal Copyright Convention.  For rights of reproduction or
    translation of WHO publications, in part or  in toto, application
    should be made to the Office of Publications, World Health
    Organization, Geneva, Switzerland.  The World Health Organization
    welcomes such applications.

    The designations employed and the presentation of the material in this
    publication do not imply the expression of any opinion whatsoever on
    the part of the Secretariat of the World Health Organization
    concerning the legal status of any country, territory, city or area or
    of its authorities, or concerning the delimitation of its frontiers or
    boundaries.

    The mention of specific companies or of certain manufacturers'
    products does not imply that they are endorsed or recommended by the
    World Health Organization in preference to others of a similar nature
    that are not mentioned.  Errors and omissions excepted, the names of
    proprietary products are distinguished by initial capital letters.

    CONTENTS

    INTRODUCTION

    1. PRODUCT IDENTITY AND USES
         1.1. Identity
         1.2. Physical and chemical properties
         1.3. Analytical methods
         1.4. Uses

    2. SUMMARY AND EVALUATION
         2.1. Human exposure to mirex
         2.2. Kinetics and metabolism
         2.3. Effects on experimental animals
         2.4. Effects on human health
         2.5. Effects on the environment

    3. CONCLUSIONS AND RECOMMENDATIONS
         3.1. Conclusions
         3.2. Recommendations

    4. HUMAN HEALTH HAZARDS, PREVENTION AND PROTECTION, EMERGENCY ACTION
         4.1. Main human health hazards, prevention and protection,
              first aid
              4.1.1. Advice to physicians
              4.1.2. Health surveillance advice
         4.2. Safety in use
         4.3. Explosion and fire hazards
              4.3.1. Explosion hazards
              4.3.2. Fire hazards
         4.4. Storage
              4.4.1. Leaking containers in store
         4.5. Transport
         4.6. Spillage and disposal
              4.6.1. Spillage
              4.6.2. Disposal

    5. HAZARDS FOR THE ENVIRONMENT AND THEIR PREVENTION
         5.1. Hazards
         5.2. Prevention

    6. INTERNATIONAL CHEMICAL SAFETY CARD

    7. CURRENT REGULATIONS, GUIDELINES, AND STANDARDS
         7.1. Previous evaluations by international bodies
         7.2. Exposure limit values
         7.3. Specific restrictions
         7.4. Labelling, packaging, and transport

    BIBLIOGRAPHY
    

    INTRODUCTION

    The Environmental Health Criteria (EHC) documents produced by the
    International Programme on Chemical Safety include an assessment of
    the effects on the environment and on human health of exposure to a
    chemical or combination of chemicals, or physical or biological
    agents.  They also provide guidelines for setting exposure limits.

    The purpose of a Health and Safety Guide is to facilitate the
    application of these guidelines in national chemical safety
    programmes. The first three sections of a Health and Safety Guide
    highlight the relevant technical information in the corresponding EHC. 
    Section 4 includes advice on preventive and protective measures and
    emergency action; health workers should be thoroughly  familiar with
    the medical information to ensure that they can act efficiently in an
    emergency.  Within the Guide is an International Chemical Safety Card
    which should be readily available, and should be clearly explained, to
    all who could come into contact with the chemical.  The section on
    regulatory information has been extracted from the legal file of the
    International Register of Potentially Toxic Chemicals (IRPTC) and from
    other United Nations sources.

    The target readership includes occupational health services, those in
    ministries, governmental agencies, industry, and trade unions who are
    involved in the safe use of chemicals and the avoidance of
    environmental health hazards, and those wanting more information on
    this topic.  An attempt has been made to use only terms that will be
    familiar to the intended user.  However, sections 1 and 2 inevitably
    contain some technical terms.  A bibliography has been included for
    readers who require further background information.

    Revision of the information in this Guide will take place in due
    course, and the eventual aim is to use standardized terminology. 
    Comments on any difficulties encountered in using the Guide would be
    very helpful and should be addressed to:

    The Manager
    International Programme on Chemical Safety
    Division of Environmental Health
    World Health Organization
    1211 Geneva 27
    Switzerland

    THE INFORMATION IN THIS GUIDE SHOULD BE CONSIDERED AS A STARTING POINT
    TO A COMPREHENSIVE HEALTH AND SAFETY PROGRAMME

    1.  PRODUCT IDENTITY AND USES

    1.1  Identity

    Common name:                Mirex

    Chemical structure:

    CHEMICAL STRUCTURE 1

    Molecular formula:          C10Cl12

    Common trade names:         Dechlorane, Ferriamicide, GC 1283

    Common synonyms:            dodecachloropentacyclo[5.2.1.026039058]-
                                decanedodecachloro-octahydro-1,3,4-metheno-2H-
                                cyclo-buta [cd]pentalene

    CAS chemical name:          1,1a,2,2,3,3a,4,5,5,5a,5b,6-
                                dodecachlorooctahydro-1,3,4-metheno-1H-
                                cyclobuta- [cd]pentalene

    CAS registry number:        2385-85-5

    Relative molecular mass:    545.5

    1.2  Physical and Chemical Properties

    Mirex is a white crystalline, odourless solid with a melting point of
    485C.  It is soluble in several organic solvents including
    tetrahydrofuran (30%), carbon disulfide (18%), chloroform (17%), and
    benzene (12%), but is practically insoluble in water.  It has a vapour
    pressure of 3  10-7mmHg at 25C.

    Mirex is considered to be extremely stable.  It does not react with
    sulfuric, nitric, hydrochloric, or other common acids and is
    unreactive with bases, chlorine, or ozone.  Despite its stability,
    reductive dechlorination of mirex can be brought about by reaction
    with reduced iron porphyrin or more effectively by vitamin B12. 
    Slow partial decomposition will also result from exposure to
    ultraviolet radiation (UVR) in hydrocarbon solvents or to gamma rays. 
    Photomirex (8-monohydro-mirex) is the major product of dechlorination
    by UVR, and may represent the fate of most of the mirex in the
    environment.

    Mirex is quite resistant to pyrolysis; decomposition begins at 525C,
    and 98-99% combustion is accomplished at 700C within 1 second. 
    Hexachlorobenzene is a major pyrolytic product with lesser amounts of
    carbon monoxide, carbon dioxide, hydrogen chloride, chlorine, carbon
    tetrachloride, and phosgene given off in the form of a vapour.

    Technical grade preparations of mirex contain 95.19% mirex and 2.58%
    chlordecone, the rest being unspecified.  The term "mirex" is also
    used to refer to bait comprising corncob grits, soya bean oil, and
    mirex.  Insect bait formulations for aerial application containing
    0.3-0.5% mirex and fire ant formulations containing 0.075-0.3% mirex
    have also been used in the USA.

    1.3  Analytical Methods

    Gas chromatography with electron capture detection is the analytical
    method most commonly used for its determination.

    1.4  Uses

    Mirex is mainly used as a flame-retardant and as a stomach
    insecticide, usually formulated into baits, for the control of ants,
    especially fire ants and harvester ants.  The USA appears to be the
    main country in which mirex was used for pest control, but this use
    was discontinued in 1978.

    The same chemical substance is used, under the name Dechlorane, as a
    fire retardant in plastics, rubbers, paints, etc.  This application is
    not restricted to the USA.

    Recently, the use of mirex has become increasingly restricted or
    prohibited in many countries (see, e.g., section 7.3).

    2.  SUMMARY AND EVALUATION

    2.1  Human Exposure to Mirex

    Food probably represents the major source of intake of mirex for the
    general population, fish, wild game, and meat being the main sources. 
    Normally, such intake is below established residue tolerances.  Mirex
    may occur in breast milk, but levels are very low or below detection
    limits.

    No data are available regarding occupational exposure.

    2.2  Kinetics and Metabolism

    Following oral ingestion, mirex is only partly absorbed into the body
    and the remainder, depending on the dose administered, is eliminated
    unchanged in the faeces.  Mirex can also be absorbed following
    inhalation and via the skin.

    It is a lipophilic compound and, as such, is stored in adipose tissue
    to a greater extent than in any other tissue.  Mirex is transferred
    across the placenta to the fetus and is excreted with the milk.

    Mirex does not appear to have been metabolized to any extent in any
    animal species investigated.  Its elimination from the body is slow
    and, depending on the species, it has a half-life in the body of
    several months.

    It is one of the most stable pesticides in use today.

    2.3  Effects on Experimental Animals

    Mirex was moderately toxic in single-dose animal studies (oral LD50
    values ranged from 365 to 3000 mg/kg body weight).  Toxic effects
    included neurological symptoms, especially tremors and convulsions.

    The most sensitive effects of repeated exposure in experimental
    animals are principally associated with the liver (liver hypertrophy
    with morphological changes in the liver cells, and induction of
    mixed-function oxidases). These effects have been observed with doses
    as low as 1 mg/kg diet (0.05 mg/kg body weight per day), the lowest
    dose tested.

    In studies to investigate the toxicity of mirex in pregnant animals,
    teratogenic effects were seen in rats given 6 mg/kg body weight per
    day by gavage, and fetotoxic effects were seen in animals given
    25 mg/kg diet.  In addition, exposure of male mice to dietary levels
    of about 2 mg/kg for 3 months resulted in impaired reproductive
    performance.

    Mirex was not generally active in short-term tests for genetic
    activity.  However, mirex is carcinogenic for both mice and rats.

    2.4  Effects on Human Health

    No data on effects on human beings were available to the Task Group.

    2.5  Effects on the Environment

    Mirex is one of the most stable and environmentally persistent
    pesticides in use today.  It is not biodegraded by microorganisms,
    except occasionally under aerobic conditions, and hydrolysis is very
    slow.  Although general environmental levels are low, it is widespread
    in the biotic and abiotic environment.  Mirex is both accumulated and
    biomagnified.  It is strongly adsorbed on sediments and has a low
    water solubility.

    The delayed onset of toxic effects and mortality is typical of mirex
    poisoning.  The long-term toxicity of mirex is uniformly high.  It is
    toxic for a range of aquatic organisms, crustacea being particularly
    sensitive.  Mirex induces pervasive long-term physiological and
    biological disorders in vertebrates.

    Although no field data are available, the adverse effects of long-term
    exposure to low levels of mirex, combined with its persistence,
    suggest that the use of mirex presents a long-term environmental risk.

    3.  CONCLUSIONS AND RECOMMENDATIONS

    3.1  Conclusions

    1.  No data on human health effects are available in connection with
    occupational exposure to mirex.  On the basis of findings in mice and
    rats, this chemical should be considered, for practical purposes, as
    being potentially carcinogenic for human beings.

    2.  For the same reason, reservations must remain about the safety of
    this chemical in food, despite the relatively low residues so far
    reported.

    3.  Effects on the organisms studied, as well as its persistence,
    suggest that mirex presents a long-term hazard for the environment.

    4.  Taking into account these considerations, it is felt that the use
    of this chemical for both agricultural and non-agricultural
    applications should be discouraged, except where there is no adequate
    alternative.

    3.2  Recommendations

    1.  Surveillance should be maintained over any future production,
    transport, and disposal of mirex and the nature and extent of both its
    agricultural and non-agricultural use.

    2.  Comprehensive monitoring of levels of mirex in the environment
    should be continued.

    4.  HUMAN HEALTH HAZARDS, PREVENTION AND PROTECTION, EMERGENCY ACTION

    4.1  Main Human Health Hazards, Prevention and Protection, First Aid

    Mirex is an organochlorine insecticide.  It is toxic and may be
    hazardous for human beings if incorrectly or carelessly handled.  It
    is therefore essential that the correct precautions should be observed
    during handling and use. 

    For details, see the International Chemical Safety Card (section 6).

    4.1.1  Advice to physicians

    4.1.1.1  Symptoms of poisoning

    Mirex is toxic by mouth, by skin contact (especially liquid
    formulations), and by inhalation of dust from powder concentrates.  It
    acts as a stimulant of the central nervous system.

    Following accidental ingestion or over-exposure, symptoms may include
    headache, dizziness, nausea, vomiting, weakness in the legs, and
    convulsions.

    Organochlorines can cause respiratory depression.  They also sensitize
    the heart to endogenous catecholamines leading to ventricular
    fibrillation and cardiac arrest in severe cases.

    Respiratory depression may lead to metabolic acidosis and, if
    necessary, blood gases should be checked.  The use of an ECG monitor
    is recommended if the symptoms are severe.

    No cases of poisoning in man have been reported so far.

    4.1.1.2  Medical advice

    Medical treatment is largely symptomatic and supportive and directed
    against convulsions and hypoxia. Because many liquid formulations
    contain hydrocarbon solvent, vomiting should  not be induced and
    emetics are contraindicated.  If swallowed, the stomach should be
    emptied as soon as possible by careful gastric lavage (with a cuffed
    endotracheal tube), avoiding aspiration into the lungs.  This should
    be followed by intragastric administration of 3-4 tablespoons of
    activated charcoal and 30 g magnesium sulfate or sodium sulfate in a
    30% aqueous solution.  Oily purgatives are contraindicated.  No fats,
    oils, or milk should be given.

    If convulsions occur, anti-convulsants should be given, e.g.,
    diazepam, 10 mg slowly intravenously (children 1-5 mg), repeated as
    necessary; or thiopental sodium, or hexobarbital sodium slowly
    intravenously in a dose of 10 mg/kg body weight with a maximum total
    dose of up to 750 mg for an adult.  On account of their short action,

    these barbiturates should always be followed by phenobarbital given
    orally at 3 mg/kg body weight (up to 200 mg for an adult), or
    phenobarbital sodium given intramuscularly at 3 mg/kg (also up to
    200 mg for an adult).

     Morphine and its derivatives, epinephrine and norepinephrine should 
    never  be given.

    An unobstructed airway must be maintained.  Oxygen and/or artificial
    respiration may be needed.

    4.1.2  Health surveillance advice

    A pre-employment and an annual general medical examination are advised
    for regularly exposed workers.  Special attention should be paid to
    liver and kidney function.

    4.2  Safety in Use

    Handling liquid formulations:      Wear protective neoprene or PVC
                                       gloves, cotton overalls, rubber
                                       boots, and face shield.

    Handling powder formulations:      Avoid raising a dust cloud.  Wear
                                       protective gloves and dust mask. 
                                       Follow the advice relating to
                                       personal hygiene.

    4.3  Explosion and Fire Hazards

    4.3.1  Explosion hazards

    The explosion hazard will depend on the solvent used in the
    formulation, or on the characteristics of the dust.

    4.3.2  Fire hazards

    Liquid products containing organic solvents may be flammable. 
    Extinguish fires with alcohol-resistant foam, carbon dioxide, or
    powder.  With sufficient burning or external heat, mirex will
    decompose, emitting toxic fumes.  Fire-fighters should wear a
    self-contained breathing apparatus, eye protection, and full
    protective clothing.

    Confine the use of water spray to the cooling of unaffected stock,
    thus avoiding the accumulation of polluted run-off from the site.

    4.4  Storage

    Products should be stored in locked buildings, preferably dedicated to
    insecticides.

    Keep products out of reach of children and unauthorized personnel.  Do
    not store near foodstuffs or animal feed.

    4.4.1  Leaking containers in store

    Take precautions and use appropriate personal protection.  Empty any
    product remaining in damaged/leaking containers into a clean empty
    drum, which should then be tightly closed and suitably labelled.

    Sweep up spillage with sawdust, sand, or earth (moisten for powders),
    and dispose of safely.

    Emptied leaking liquid containers should be rinsed with at least
    1 litre water per 20-litre drum.  Swirl round to rinse the walls,
    empty, and add the rinsings to the sawdust or earth.  Do not re-use
    containers for any other purpose.  Puncture the container to prevent
    re-use.

    4.5  Transport

    Comply with any local requirements regarding movement of hazardous
    goods. Do not transport with foodstuffs or animal feed.  Make sure
    that containers are in good condition and labels undamaged before
    dispatch.

    4.6  Spillage and Disposal

    4.6.1  Spillage

    Before dealing with any spillage, precautions should be taken as
    required and appropriate personal protection should be used.

    Prevent liquid from spreading or contaminating other cargo and
    vegetation, and avoid pollution of surface waters and ground water by
    using the most suitable available material, e.g., earth or sand.

    Absorb spilled liquid with sawdust, sand, or earth, sweep up and place
    it in a closeable container for later transfer to a safe place for
    disposal.

    As soon as possible after the spillage and before re-use, cover all
    contaminated areas with damp sawdust, sand, or earth.  Sweep up and
    place in a closeable container for later transfer to a safe place for
    disposal.  Care should be taken to avoid run-off into surface waters
    or drains.

    4.6.2  Disposal

    Surplus product, contaminated absorbents, and containers should be
    disposed of in an appropriate way.  Mirex is not readily decomposed
    chemically or biologically and is relatively persistent.  Waste
    material should be burned only in  a proper incinerator designed for
    organochlorine waste disposal (1000C and 30-min residence time with
    effluent gas scrubbing).  If this is not possible, bury in an approved 
    dump or landfill where there is no risk of contamination of surface or
    ground water.  Comply with any local legislation regarding disposal of
    toxic wastes.

    5.  HAZARDS FOR THE ENVIRONMENT AND THEIR PREVENTION

    5.1  Hazards

    Mirex is one of the most stable of the organochlorine insecticides. 
    Although general environmental levels are low, it is widespread in the
    biotic and abiotic environment.  Mirex is both accumulated and
    biomagnified.  It is strongly adsorbed on sediments and has a low
    water solubility.

    Delayed onset of toxic effects and mortality is typical of mirex
    poisoning.  The long-term toxicity of mirex is uniformly high.  Mirex
    is toxic for a range of aquatic organisms, crustacea being
    particularly sensitive.

    Although no field data are available, the adverse effects of long-term
    exposure to low levels of mirex, combined with its persistence,
    suggest that the use of mirex presents a long-term environmental risk.

    5.2  Prevention

    Industrial discharges from manufacturing, formulation, and technical
    applications should not be allowed to pollute the environment and
    should be treated properly.

    Any spillage or unused product should be prevented from spreading to
    vegetation or waterways and should be treated and disposed of
    properly.

    6.  INTERNATIONAL CHEMICAL SAFETY CARD

     This card should be easily available to all health workers concerned
     with, and users of, mirex. It should be displayed at, or near,
     entrances to areas where there is potential exposure to mirex, and on
     processing equipment and containers.  The card should be translated
     into the appropriate language(s).  All persons potentially exposed to
     the chemical should also have the instructions on the chemical safety
     card clearly explained.

     Space is available on the card for insertion of the National
     Occupational Exposure Limit, the address and telephone number of the 
     National Poison Control Centre, and for local trade names.


        MIREX

    CAS chemical name: 1,1a,2,2,3,3a,4,5,5,5a,5b,6-dodecachloroocta-hydro-1,3,4-metheno-1H-cyclobuta[cd]pentalene
    CAS registry number: 2385-85-5
    RTECS registry number: PC8225000
    Molecular formula: C10Cl12

                                                                                                                                         

    PHYSICAL PROPERTIES                                                   OTHER CHARACTERISTICS
                                                                                                                                         

    Melting point (C)                 485                                Mirex is a white crystalline, odourless solid; it is
    Vapour pressure (mmHg at 25C)     3  10-7                           considered to be extremely stable and does not react
    Relative molecular mass            545.5                              with common acids, bases, chlorine, or ozone; slow,
    Solubility:                                                           partial dechlorination by UV radiation yields 
      in water                         practically                        photomirex; it is quite resistant to pyrolysis,
                                         insoluble                        hexachlorobenzene being a major pyrolysis product; it is a
      in tetrahydrofuram               30%                                stomach insecticide with little contact activity;
      in carbon disulfide              18%                                a major use is for ant control; it is also used as a
      in chloroform                    17%                                flame retardant under the name Dechlorane
      in benzene                       12%

                                                                                                                                         

    HAZARDS/SYMPTOMS                        PREVENTION AND PROTECTION                    FIRST AID
                                                                                                                                         

    GENERAL: Potential human
    carcinogen; on repeated exposure
    mirex may accumulate in the body

    SKIN: Overexposure may cause            Avoid skin contact; wear                     Remove contaminated clothing
    poisoning                               protective clothing, PVC or                  immediately; wash skin with water
                                            neoprene gloves, rubber boots                and soap

    EYES: Irritation, redness               Wear face-shield or goggles                  Flush with clean water for 15 minutes; 
                                                                                         if irritation persists, seek medical
                                                                                         attention

    INHALATION: Dust may irritate           Wear appropriate dust mask or
                                            respirator

    INGESTION: Unlikely                     Do not eat, drink, or smoke
    occupational hazard                     during work; wash hands before
                                            eating, drinking, or smoking

    Accidental or intentional ingestion                                                  Obtain medical attention immediately; do 
    may cause poisoning                                                                  not induce vomiting; keep at rest lying
                                                                                         face downwards; ensure clear airway;
                                                                                         fat, milk, or oil shoud not be given

    ENVIRONMENT: Toxic for aquatic          Do not spill on animal feed or
    and terrestrial life; persistent        in waterways

                                                                                                                                         

    SPILLAGE                                STORAGE                                      FIRE AND EXPLOSION
                                                                                                                                         

    Take appropriate personal               Products should be stored in                 Liquid products will burn and emulsifiable
    precautions; prevent liquid             locked buildings, preferably                 concentrates are miscible with water;
    from spreading or contaminating         dedicated to insecticides                    extinguish fires with alcohol-resistant foam,
    other cargo, vegetation, or                                                          carbon dioxide, or powder; with sufficient
    waterways, with a barrier of the                                                     burning or external heat, mirex will 
    most suitable available material,       Keep products out of reach of                decompose, emitting toxic fumes; the smoke
    e.g., earth or sand                     children and unauthorized                    and fumes could be injurious through
                                            personnel; do not store near                 inhalation, or absorption through the skin;
    Absorb spilled liquid with              foodstuffs or animal feed                    therefore, firefighters should wear 
    sawdust, sand, or earth; sweep up                                                    protective clothing and self-contained breathing
    and place it in a closeable container                                                apparatus; confine the use of water spray
    for later safe disposal                                                              to the cooling of unaffected stock, thus
                                                                                         avoiding polluted run-off from the site

                                                                                                                                         

    WASTE DISPOSAL                          NATIONAL INFORMATION
                                                                                                                                         

    Mirex is not readily                    National Occupational Exposure               UN No. 2762, 2995, 2996
    decomposed chemically or biologically   Limit:
    and is relatively persistent;
    waste material should be burned
    in a proper incinerator designed
    for organochlorine waste disposal;      National Poison Control Centre:
    if this is not possible, bury in
    an approved dump or landfill where
    there is no risk of contamination
    of surface or ground water;
    comply with any local legislation       Local trade names:
    regarding disposal of toxic wastes

    FIGURE 1
                                                                                                                                         
    
    7.  CURRENT REGULATIONS, GUIDELINES, AND STANDARDS

    The information given in this section has been extracted from the
    International Register of Potentially Toxic Chemicals (IRPTC) legal
    file and other United Nations sources.  Its intention is to give the
    reader a representative but non-exhaustive overview of current
    regulations, guidelines, and standards.

    The reader should be aware that regulatory decisions about chemicals
    taken in a certain country can only be fully understood in the
    framework of the legislation of that country. Furthermore, the
    regulations and guidelines of all countries are subject to change and
    should always be verified with the appropriate regulatory authorities
    before application.

    7.1  Previous Evaluations by International Bodies

    IARC (1979) evaluated the carcinogenic hazard resulting from exposure
    to mirex and concluded that "there is sufficient evidence for its
    carcinogenicity to mice and rats.  In the absence of adequate data in
    humans, it is reasonable, for practical purposes, to regard mirex as
    if it presented a carcinogenic risk to humans".

    An acceptable daily intake (ADI) for mirex has not been established by
    FAO/WHO.

    7.2  Exposure Limit Values

    Some exposure limit values are given in the table on the opposite
    page.

    7.3  Specific Restrictions

    Recently, the use of mirex has been increasingly restricted or
    prohibited in many countries.

    In the USA, all registered products containing mirex have been
    cancelled.  It has been banned in Ecuador and in various other
    countries.  In the German Democratic Republic, mirex is not permitted
    in agricultural formulations.


        EXPOSURE LIMIT VALUES

                                                                                                                                         

    Medium      Specification       Country/            Exposure limit description                   Value                Effective
                                    organization                                                                          date
                                                                                                                                         

    FOOD,                           USA                 Acceptable residue limit (ARL)                                    1981
    ANIMAL                                              - Specified animal products                  0.1 mg/kg
    FEED                                                - General                                    0.01 mg/kg

    FOOD                            Germany,            Maximum residue limit (MRL)                                       1984
                                    Federal             - Plant (all)                                0.01 mg/kg
                                    Republic of

    FOOD        Animal              Germany,            Maximum residue limit (MRL)                                       1984
                                    Federal             - of animal origin (specified)               0.1 mg/kg
                                    Republic of                                                      wet weight

                                                                                                     0.1 mg/kg
                                                                                                     lipid weight

                                                        - of animal origin (general)                 0.01 mg/kg
                                                                                                     wet weight

                                                                                                                                         
    

    7.4  Labelling, Packaging, and Transport

    The United Nations Committee of Experts on the Transportation of
    Dangerous Goods classified mirex in:

    - Hazard Class 6.1:           poisonous substance

    - Packing Group III:          a substance presenting a relatively low
                                  risk of poisoning in transport (mirex
                                  liquid formulations >60%)

    The label should be as follows:

    FIGURE 2

    The bottom half of the label should bear the inscriptions:

          Harmful, stow away from foodstuffs.

    BIBLIOGRAPHY

    FAO  (1985a)  Guidelines for the packaging and storage of pesticides,
    Rome, Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations.

    FAO  (1985b)  Guidelines for the disposal of waste pesticides and
     pesticide containers on the farm, Rome, Food and Agriculture
    Organization of the United Nations.

    FAO  (1985c)  Guidelines on good labelling practice for pesticides,
    Rome, Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations.

    FAO  (1986)  International code of conduct on the distribution and use
     of pesticides, Rome, Food and Agriculture Organization of the United
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    FAO/WHO  (1986)  Guide to Codex recommendations concerning pesticide
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    GIFAP  (1982)  Guidelines for the safe handling of pesticides during
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    GIFAP  (1983)  Guidelines for the safe and effective use of
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    GIFAP  (1984)  Guidelines for emergency measures in cases of pesticide
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    GIFAP (1987)  Guidelines for the safe transport of pesticides,
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    IARC  (1972-present)  IARC monographs on the evaluation of
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    IRPTC  (1985)  IRPTC file on treatment and disposal methods for waste
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    IRPTC  (1987)  IRPTC legal file 1986, Geneva, International Register
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    PLESTINA, R.  (1984)  Prevention, diagnosis, and treatment of
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    SAX, N.I.  (1984)  Dangerous properties of industrial materials, New
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    UNITED NATIONS  (1986)  Recommendations on the transport of dangerous
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    US NIOSH/OSHA  (1981)  Occupational health guidelines for chemical
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    WHO  (1984)  Environmental Health Criteria 44: Mirex. Geneva, World
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    WHO/FAO  (1975-90)  Data sheets on pesticides. Geneva, World Health
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    WORTHING, C.R. & WALKER, S.B.  (1983)  The pesticide manual, 7th ed.,
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    See Also:
       Toxicological Abbreviations
       Mirex (EHC 44, 1984)
       Mirex (IARC Summary & Evaluation, Volume 5, 1974)
       Mirex (IARC Summary & Evaluation, Volume 20, 1979)