1965: Maffra. The use of Dinoseb on pea crops. Related to Pentachlorphenol which killed people in Queensland pineapple and sugarcane crops

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21 October, 1965

… Shire of Maffra:

There is considerable local discussion, not at this stage official, about the use of a spray for pea crops. The spray is known as D & BP, is applied from the ground by sprays, and by implication, its appears to be very pungent and great care is required in its application.

The Representatives of the company which supplies this spray told me that it is so toxic that a dog walking through a paddock two days after spraying died as a result.

Apparently it has a similar chemical formula to Mustard Gas and several have referred to feeling distressed when accidently inhaling it.

Under these circumstances it would seem advisable that there should be some local knowledge as to its constitution, toxicity, and if there is need for restricted use…

Health Inspector

29/11/65

Victorian Health Department Letter.

“… The spray for pea crops is D.N.B.P (dinitro butyl phenol) – common name Dinoseb.

This has a pharmacological action similar to dinitro-phenol which stimulates metabolism and causes poisoning by hyperthermis.

Substances in this group have caused quite a few fatalities in the U.K. where they have extensively been used as weedicides.

There has been no trouble reported so far in Australia from this group, probably because they have as yet had no extensive use.