Relevance. More and more widespread use in the world, and in Ukraine in particular, is acquiring a method of applying pesticides from the air using unmanned aerial vehicles (UAVs, or drones). It is expected that in the global agricultural market in the period from 2018 to 2026 the growth rate of drone use will be up to +18.5%.
Objective: hygienic assessment of working conditions and occupational risks when applying pesticides using unmanned aerial vehicles (UAVs), analysis of their features and comparison with other most common types of treatment in agriculture.
Materials and methods. Field studies were carried out in 2018–2021. When introducing the drug, certified equipment was used: a backpack sprayer SOLO-10, a trailed boom sprayer AMAZON 1201 UF combined with an MTZ 82.1 “Belorus” tractor, an Agras T16 unmanned aerial vehicle for spraying fields produced by DJ company, aircraft AN-2 combined with OZh-2 (with valveless liquid cut-off). Air sampling was performed using a “Typhoon” portable aspirator.
Results. Analysis of calculations for the determination of inhalation for azoxystrobin (0.12 ± 0.004) and cyproconazole (54.2 ± 1.23); complex for azoxystrobin (0.52 ± 0.01) and cyproconazole (58.4 ± 1, 8) and combined (0.59 ± 0.01) risks showed that they are the highest for the signalman indicating the direction of flight to the pilot. Reliably lower risks of the negative impact of the working environment on the health of the sprayer tanker than the operator / tractor driver, aircraft pilot and signalman. Note that inhalation, percutaneous, complex and combined risks are reliably higher only for the drone tanker compared to the data for the outdoor pilot when a pesticide is introduced from the air.
Conclusion. It was found that the risks for workers involved in the processing of crops by UAVs are significantly lower compared to aviation treatment, and are in the same range with the risks of other types of processing (rod, fan, knapsack).
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