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GPS required for aerial glyphosate applications

The Mississippi State Board of Agricultural Aviation has adopted amendments to the regulations governing aerial application of glyphosate products.

In recent years, off-target movement of glyphosate has resulted in an increased number of drift complaints. The new regulations, which went into effect Feb. 1, apply only to glyphosate products and only in the 19 Delta counties from February to September.

The new regulations require each aircraft to have a Global Positioning System (GPS) capable of electronically recording and post processing into hard copies flight information.

Data for each glyphosate application shall include:

• Date and time of day of each application

• Swath width

• Physical location (latitude and longitude)

• Altitude

• Complete tracking of aircraft from take-off to landing

• Spray on/off delineation — coordinated on application map

• Job location/file name

• Aircraft registration number

• Pilot identification

The amended regulations also require that all applicators have meteorological equipment capable of physically measuring and recording (1) the location of measurement (latitude and longitude), (2) wind speed, (3) wind direction, and (4) temperature.

Alternatively, an applicator may utilize a recognized meteorological reporting station within a 10-mile radius of his or her base operation.

Since the Agricultural Aviation Board has adopted these changes, the Bureau of Plant Industry will no longer require aerial applicators to obtain a permit for each application of glyphosate during the months of March and April when making preplant burn-down applications.

Prior to 2007, aerial application of glyphosate was prohibited in the 19 Delta counties during March and April except by permit from an authorized employee of the bureau. The new regulation eliminates the need for this restriction.

Tommy McDaniel is the director of the Pesticide Division of the Mississippi Bureau of Plant Industry. For more information, contact him at [email protected].

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