Looking to get rid of pesky pests? Make sure you ask to see a technician’s pesticide licence first

Home and business-owners are being reminded by the NSW Environment Protection Authority (EPA) to check for pesticide licenses before hiring a technician to spray your property.

EPA Director Hazardous Materials Chemicals and Radiation Asela Atapattu said the pesticide licensing system meant the EPA could keep rogue operators out of business.

“If you are getting your home or business sprayed for pests, cockroaches, spiders, or other insects, check the technician is licensed first, before you hire them,” Mr Atapattu said.

“By law, a person carrying out prescribed pesticide work must hold a licence issued by the NSW EPA. This means we can oversee the process, ensuring they’re using only registered pesticide chemicals and taking all measures to avoid harming other people, animals or damaging the environment.

“Consumers are completely within their rights to ask about a technician’s licence. If the contractor can’t or won’t produce one, our advice is to not give them the job.”

You can check whether a pest controller is licensed by searching the EPA’s public register. Visit the EPA’s website:  https://apps.epa.nsw.gov.au/prrdlapp/plpr.aspx. You can contact the EPA's 24/7 Environment Line on 131 555 or info@epa.nsw.gov.au if you can’t find a person or licence, or if a pest controller is unable to produce their licence.

Warning about rogue operators – fine issued to unlicensed technician

The EPA will take regulatory action if a technician is operating without a licence. The EPA recently investigated an individual, most recently trading as Exit Pest Solutions, for carrying out alleged unlicensed pest management work in Campbelltown. When officers investigated they found the individual’s Pest Management Technician licence had expired in 2016.

Further research showed that the business owner had previously received several EPA penalty notices under different business names. In 2019 he was issued a $750 fine for failure to comply with a request for information and records from the EPA.

Penalty notices are one of a number of tools the EPA can use to achieve environmental compliance including formal warnings, official cautions, licence conditions, notices and directions and prosecutions. In this instance the EPA issued a penalty notice. The notice recipient may pay the penalty notice, seek a review, or elect to have the matter determined by a court.

For more information about how to ensure you are hiring a licensed pest technician, visit https://www.epa.nsw.gov.au/your-environment/pesticides/pesticide-use-nsw/engaging-a-pest-management-technician

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