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    IPCS INTERNATIONAL PROGRAMME ON CHEMICAL SAFETY
    Health and Safety Guide No. 14

    HEPTACHLOR
    HEALTH AND SAFETY GUIDE






    UNITED NATIONS ENVIRONMENT PROGRAMME

    INTERNATIONAL LABOUR ORGANISATION

    WORLD HEALTH ORGANIZATION




    WORLD HEALTH ORGANIZATION, GENEVA

    This is a companion volume to Environmental Health Criteria 38:
    Heptachlor

    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 Organization, or the World Health Organization 

    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)

    ISBN 92 4 154334 5

    (c) World Health Organization 1988

    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. Production and uses

    2. SUMMARY AND EVALUATION
         2.1. Heptachlor toxicity
         2.2. Human exposure to heptachlor
         2.3. Evaluation of effects on the environment

    3. CONCLUSIONS

    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
                     4.1.1.1  Symptoms of poisoning
                     4.1.1.2  Medical advice
         4.2. Health surveillance advice
         4.3. Safety in use
         4.4. Explosion and fire hazards
              4.4.1. Explosion hazards
              4.4.2. Fire hazards
         4.5. Storage
              4.5.1. Leaking containers in store
         4.6. Transport
         4.7. Spillage and disposal
              4.7.1. Spillage
                     4.7.1.1  Solid products
                     4.7.1.2  Liquid products
                     4.7.1.3  All products
              4.7.2. Disposal

    5. HAZARDS FOR THE ENVIRONMENT AND THEIR 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
         7.5. Waste disposal
         7.6. Other measures

    BIBLIOGRAPHY
    

    INTRODUCTION

    The International Programme on Chemical Safety prepares for
    publication a series of Environmental Health Criteria (EHC)
    documents, each of which includes an assessment of the effects on
    human health and the environment of exposure to a specific chemical,
    or group of chemicals, and gives guidelines for setting exposure
    limits.  The Health and Safety Guides complement the criteria
    documents and are intended to facilitate the application of the
    guidelines in national chemical safety programmes.

    The first three sections of each Health and Safety Guide highlight
    the relevant technical information from the corresponding EHC
    document.  Section 4 includes advice on preventive and protective
    measures and action to be taken in an emergency.  All health staff
    should be thoroughly familiar with this information to ensure that
    they can act rapidly and efficiently in an emergency.  Hazards for
    the environment and their prevention are discussed in section 5. 
    Each Guide indicates the information to be included in an
    International Chemical Safety Card, which should be prominently
    displayed in all areas where there is a possibility of exposure to
    the chemical(s).  The information included in the final section on
    current national regulations and standards has been obtained from
    the International Register of Potentially Toxic Chemicals (IRPTC)
    and from other United Nations sources.

    The target readership for the Health and Safety Guides includes the
    staff of occupational health services and government ministries and
    agencies, and personnel in industry and the trade unions who are
    concerned with the safe use of chemicals and the avoidance of
    environmental health hazards.  The information on the prevention of,
    and protection against, accidents will be of vital interest to all
    workers who are involved in the production and handling of toxic
    chemicals.  A bibliography has been included for readers who require
    further background information.

    The information in this Guide will be revised in due course, and the
    eventual aim is to use standardized terminology. 

    Comments on any difficulties encountered in using this 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, PRODUCTION, AND USES

    1.1  Identity

    Common name:                  Heptachlor

    Chemical formula:             C10H5Cl7

    Chemical structure:

    CHEMICAL STRUCTURE 1

    Common trade names:           Aahepta, Agroceres, Basaklor, Drinox,
                                  Eptacloro, E 3314, GPKh,
                                  Heptachlorane, Heptagran, Heptagranox,
                                  Heptamak, Heptamul, Heptasol, Heptox,
                                  Rhodiachlor, Soleptax, Velsicol 104

    CAS chemical name:            1,4,5,6,7,8,8-heptachloro-3a,4,7,7a-
                                  tetra-hydro-4,7-methano-1H-indene

    CAS registry number:          76-44-8

    RTECS registry number:        PC0700000

    Relative molecular mass:      373.3

    1.2  Physical and Chemical Properties

    Heptachlor is a white crystalline solid with a mild odour of
    camphor, a melting point of 93C (46-74C for the technical
    product), and a density of 1.65-1.67 g/ml at 25C. It has a boiling
    point of 135-145C and vapour pressure of 4 x 10-4 mmHg at 25C.

    It is virtually insoluble in water (0.056 mg/litre) but fairly
    soluble in organic solvents, e.g., ethanol (45 g/litre), xylene
    (1020 g/litre), acetone (750 g/litre), and benzene (1060 g/litre).

    It is stable in daylight, air, moisture, and moderate heat (160C)
    but is oxidized biologically to heptachlor epoxide (Whetstone,
    1964).

    Technical heptachlor contains about 72-74% 1,4,5,6,7,8,8-
    heptachloro-3a,4,7,7a-tetrahydro-4,7-methano-1H-indene, 20-22%
    gamma-chlordane, and 4-8% gamma-nonachlor.

    1.3  Analytical Methods

    Extraction from crops, other plant products, dairy products and oils
    can be achieved with hexane-acetone or acetonitrile.

    The method of choice for the qualitative and quantitative
    determination of heptachlor is gas-liquid chromatography with
    electron capture detection.

    1.4  Production and Uses

    Heptachlor was isolated in 1946 from technical chlordane.

    Production of heptachlor in the USA in 1971 was estimated to be 2.7
    million kg. In 1970, the use of heptachlor throughout the world was
    as follows: Africa 5%, Asia 15%, Canada and the USA 5%, Europe 60%,
    and South America 15%. Recently, the use of heptachlor has been
    increasingly restricted in many countries (section 7.3).

    Formulations include emulsifiable concentrates, wettable powders,
    dusts, and granules, containing various concentrations of active
    material.

    Heptachlor was first introduced as a contact insecticide in the USA
    in 1952 for foliar, soil and structural application, and for the
    control of malaria. It is a non-systemic stomach and contact
    insecticide. The use of heptachlor is now confined almost
    exclusively to the control of soil insects and termites.

    2.  SUMMARY AND EVALUATION

    2.1  Heptachlor Toxicity

    Heptachlor is readily absorbed following ingestion and skin contact
    and is transported throughout the body. Heptachlor epoxide, the most
    persistent metabolite, is rapidly formed and can be found in the
    body, mainly in adipose tissue. The toxicity of heptachlor epoxide
    is similar to that of heptachlor. Elimination takes place via both
    the urine and faeces. Human milk can be a major excretion route for
    heptachlor residues.

    The acute toxicity of heptachlor in the rat ranges from 40 to
    162 mg/kg body weight. Toxic symptoms are related to CNS-hyperactivity
    and include tremors and convulsions. In experimental animals,
    prolonged low-level exposure results in the induction of hepatic
    microsomal enzymes and, at a later stage, in liver hypertrophy with
    histological changes. At higher levels, heptachlor is hepatotoxic.

    Heptachlor was not a teratogen in the experimental animal studies
    conducted, but at higher exposure levels it may interfere with
    reproduction and the viability of the offspring.

    Heptachlor was not generally active in short-term tests for genetic
    activity. There was evidence that it might have an effect on cell to
    cell communication  in vitro, a characteristic property of many
    promoting agents.

    There is limited evidence for the carcinogenicity of heptachlor and
    heptachlor epoxide in experimental animals.

    No cases of adverse effects in man or occupational poisoning have
    been reported.

    2.2  Human Exposure to Heptachlor

    Food is the major source of exposure to heptachlor for the general
    population, but residue intake in most countries is below the
    advised acceptable daily intake. In areas where heptachlor is used,
    the inhalation of dust or mist and the drinking of well-water may
    account for some additional exposure.

    Relatively high concentrations of heptachlor epoxide can be found in
    human milk, especially in areas with high heptachlor exposure in the
    general population.

    Occupational exposure, especially via the skin and via inhalation,
    can be considerable when the material is handled in installations or
    situations with insufficient safety precautions.

    2.3  Evaluation of Effects on the Environment

    Heptachlor is persistent and relatively immobile in soil. However,
    it may be lost from the soil by slow vaporization, by oxidation to
    heptachlor epoxide (a more persistent degradation product of
    comparable toxicity), by photoconversion to photo-heptachlor, or by
    conversion to less toxic metabolites by soil bacteria. The rate at
    which heptachlor is lost by these different mechanisms is influenced
    by climate, soil type, and management practices (retention being
    longest in undisturbed soil). The majority of heptachlor residues
    are found in the top few centimetres of soil and are most likely to
    be spread with dust particles by air currents.

    Although there is no indication of widespread contamination of water
    by heptachlor, its residues have been found in fish from various
    bodies of water. Heptachlor is not very soluble in water and
    persists in aquatic ecosystems by being adsorbed on sediments. It
    has been shown to be toxic for aquatic life, but its toxicity varies
    considerably with species. This is particularly so in marine
    vertebrates, where acute LC50 values span three orders of
    magnitude. Marine crustacea are particularly sensitive to
    heptachlor; a concentration of 0.03 g/litre may be lethal. Younger
    life stages of both fish and invertebrates are the most sensitive to
    heptachlor, "safe" concentrations being 0.1 and 0.01 g/litre,
    respectively.

    Evaluation of the toxicity of heptachlor for wildlife depends solely
    on extrapolation from studies on game birds and domestic species. In
    these animals, toxicity is variable, with LD50 values ranging from
    6 to 531 mg/kg body weight. Heptachlor is generally classified as a
    neurotoxin.

    Uptake of heptachlor in animals is fairly rapid. It is rapidly
    metabolized to heptachlor epoxide, which can persist for extended
    periods of time in body fat. The relative amounts of heptachlor
    epoxide in tissues increase with length of exposure. Few data are
    available on the toxicity of this metabolite, but indications are
    that it is comparable to that of heptachlor.

    Bioaccumulation and biomagnification occur and bioconcentration
    factors of 200-37 000 have been reported from water into hydrobiota.
    The marked persistence of heptachlor in the environment and its
    tendency to accumulate in body fat make it a serious environmental
    hazard.

    3.  CONCLUSIONS

    Although there is no evidence that heptachlor is a human carcinogen,
    the suspicion, principally arising from the mouse carcinogenicity
    studies, cannot be ignored. Further research is required to look
    into this problem. Nevertheless, with the present state of
    knowledge, it is concluded that:

    (a)  As long as occupational hygiene procedures are maintained to
         keep exposure levels to a minimum, whether or not by the
         imposition of maximum allowable concentrations, there is little
         reason to believe that workers will be at risk from handling,
         or contact with, heptachlor.

    (b)  Members of the general population should not suffer any adverse
         effects from heptachlor residues in food, provided that intake
         is kept within the ADI set by the FAO/WHO Joint Meeting.

         In certain regions of the world, the exposure of the general
         population to heptachlor may be increased if heptachlor is used
         in buildings for the control of termites.

         The intake of heptachlor residues by breast-fed infants,
         through human milk, in areas of high heptachlor use, remains a
         concern.

    (c)  Environmentally, heptachlor causes concern because several
         marine species are highly sensitive to it and because of the
         persistence of the metabolite heptachlor epoxide in adipose
         tissue and in the environment.

    From: Environmental Health Criteria 38: Heptachlor

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

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

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

    For details see the International Chemical Safety Card (pages 20-23).

    4.1.1  Advice to Physicians

    4.1.1.1  Symptoms of poisoning

    Heptachlor 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 legs, and
    convulsions.

    4.1.1.2  Medical advice

    Medical treatment is largely symptomatic and supportive and directed
    against convulsions and anoxaemia. If swallowed, vomiting should not
    be induced and emetics are contraindicated, because many liquid
    formulations contain hydrocarbons and there is risk of aspiration
    pneumonia. Instead, the stomach should be emptied as soon as
    possible by careful gastric lavage, using a cuffed endotracheal tube
    to avoid aspiration into the lungs. This should be followed by
    intragastric administration of 3-4 tablespoons of activated charcoal
    and 30 g of magnesium or sodium sulfate in a 30% aqueous solution.
    Oily purgatives are contraindicated. No fats, oils, or milk should
    be given.

    If convulsions occur, anticonvulsants 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, or paraldehyde at 5 ml by
    injection. These short-acting anticonvulsants should always be
    followed by phenobarbital given orally at 3 mg/kg body weight (up to
    200 mg for anadult), or phenobarbital sodium given intramuscularly
    at 3 mg/kg body weight (also up to 200 mg for an adult).

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

    An unobstructed airway must be maintained. Respiratory inadequacy,
    which may be accentuated by barbiturate anticonvulsants, should be
    corrected, and oxygen and/or artificial ventilation may be needed.

    4.2  Health Surveillance Advice

    A complete medical history should be taken, and physical examination
    made, annually. Special attention should be paid to liver and kidney
    function.

    4.3  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 neoprene or PVC
                                       gloves, cotton overalls, and dust
                                       mask.

    4.4  Explosion and Fire Hazards

    4.4.1  Explosion hazards

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

    4.4.2  Fire hazards

    Liquid formulations containing organic solvents may be flammable.
    Extinguish fires with alcohol-resistant foam, carbon dioxide, or
    powder.

    With sufficient burning or external heat, heptachlor will decompose
    emitting toxic fumes. Fire-fighters should wear self-contained
    breathing apparatus, eye protection, and full protective clothing.

    The use of water spray should be confined to the cooling of
    unaffected stock, to avoid the accumulation of polluted run-off from
    the site.

    4.5  Storage

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

    Products should be kept out of reach of children and unauthorized
    personnel and should not be stored near foodstuffs or animal feed.

    4.5.1  Leaking containers in store

    The precautions described in section 4.3 should be followed. Any
    product remaining in damaged/leaking containers should be emptied
    into a clean empty drum, which should then be tightly closed and
    suitably labelled.

    Spillage should be swept up with sawdust, sand, or earth (moisten
    for powders), and placed in a closed container for later disposal
    (section 4.7.2).

    Leaking containers that have been emptied should be rinsed with at
    least 1 litre of water per 20-litre drum. Swirl round to rinse the
    walls, empty and add the rinsings to the sawdust or earth. The
    containers should be punctured to prevent re-use for any purpose.

    4.6  Transport

    Local requirements regarding movements of hazardous goods should be
    complied with. The product should not be transported with feed or
    food-stuffs. The containers should be checked before despatch to
    make sure that they are in good condition and that the labels are
    undamaged. 

    4.7  Spillage and Disposal

    4.7.1  Spillage

    Before dealing with any spillage, the precautions described in
    section 4.3 should be followed.

    4.7.1.1  Solid products

    The spilled product should be absorbed in moist sawdust, sand, or
    earth, swept up, and transferred in a suitable container to a safe
    place for disposal.

    4.7.1.2  Liquid products

    The liquid should be prevented from spreading or contaminating other
    cargo, vegetation, or waterways, by making a barrier of the most
    suitable material available, e.g., earth or sand.

    Spilled liquid should be absorbed in sawdust, sand, or earth, which
    should then be swept up and placed in a closeable container for
    later transfer to a safe place for disposal.

    4.7.1.3  All products

    As soon as possible after the spillage and before contaminated areas
    are re-used, they should be covered with damp sawdust, sand, or
    earth, which should then be swept up and placed in a closeable
    container for later transfer to a safe place for disposal. Since
    heptachlor is toxic for fish, care should be taken to avoid run-off
    into water courses.

    4.7.2  Disposal

    Surplus product, and contaminated absorbants and containers should
    be disposed of in an appropriate way. Heptachlor 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, it should be buried in an approved dump or landfill, where
    there is no risk of contaminating surface or ground water. Any local
    legislation regarding disposal of toxic wastes should be complied
    with.

    5.  HAZARDS FOR THE ENVIRONMENT AND THEIR PREVENTION

    Heptachlor may pose a toxic hazard for many aquatic and terrestrial
    species. It may give rise to bioaccumulation and biomagnification
    and its main metabolite, heptachlor epoxide, is rather persistent in
    the environment.

    Industrial discharges during manufacture, formulation, and technical
    use 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 (see section 4.7).

    6. INTERNATIONAL CHEMICAL SAFETY CARD

     This card should be easily available to all health workers
     concerned with, and users of, heptachlor. It should be displayed
     at, or near, entrances to areas where there is potential exposure
     to heptachlor, 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. 


        HEPTACHLOR

    (C10H5Cl7) (CAS chemical name: 1,4,5,6,7,8,8-heptachloro-3a,4,7,7a-tetrahydro-4,7-methano-1H-indene)
    (CAS registry number: 76-44-8; RTECS registry number: PC0700000)

                                                                                                                                         

    PHYSICAL PROPERTIES                                        OTHER CHARACTERISTICS
                                                                                                                                         

    Melting point (C)                                         White crystalline solid with a mild odour of camphor; it
      Pure                             93                      is stable in daylight, air, moisture, and moderate heat 
      Technical product                46-74                   (160 C); it is oxidized biologically to heptachlor epoxide; 
    Boiling point (C)                 135-145                 technical heptachlor contains approximately 72-74%
    Density (g/ml)                     1.65-1.67               heptachlor, 20-22% gamma-chlordane, and 4-8% 
    Vapour pressure (mmHg at 25 C)    4  10-4                gamma-nonachlor; it is abroad-spectrum insecticide
    Relative molecular mass            373.3                   used almost exclusively for the control of soil insects and 
    Solubility in:                                             termites; its uses have been increasingly restricted
      water (virtually insoluble)      56 g/litre
      ethanol                          45 g/litre
      xylene                           1020 g/litre
      acetone                          750 g/litre
      benzene                          1060 g/litre


                                                                                                                                         

    HAZARDS/SYMPTOMS                          PREVENTION AND PROTECTION                     FIRST AID
                                                                                                                                         

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

    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 dust mask

    INGESTION: Unlikely occupational          Do not eat, drink, or smoke during work
    hazard

    Accidental or intentional ingestion                                                     Obtain medical attention immediately; do not
    may cause poisoning                                                                     induce vomiting; keep at rest lying face
    downwards

    REPEATED EXPOSURE                         Precautions and personal protection as        In case of poisoning, same as above
    THROUGH SKIN, INHALATION                  above; take a shower and put on clean
    OR INGESTION: Poisoning may               clothing after work
    occur after a considerable time
    due to a slow build up of toxicant
    in the body

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

                                                                                                                                         

    SPILLAGE                               STORAGE                                 FIRE AND EXPLOSION
                                                                                                                                         

    Take appropriate personal              Products should be stores in            Powder products will not burn; liquid products
    precautions; prevent liquid from       locked buildings, preferably            will burn and emulsifiable concentrates are 
    spreading or contaminating other       dedicated to insecticides               miscible with water; extinguish fires with 
    cargo, vegetation, or waterways,                                               alcohol-resistant foam, CO2, or powder; with 
    with a barrier of the most suitable    Keep products out of reach of           sufficient burning or external heat, heptachlor will 
    available material, e.g., earth or     children and unauthorized personnel;    decompose emitting toxic fumes; the smoke and fumes
    sand                                   do not store near foodstuffs or         could be injurious through inhalation or
                                           animal feed                             absorption through the skin, therefore,
    Absorb spilled liquid with sawdust,                                            protective clothing and self-contained breathing
    sand, or earth; sweep up and place                                             apparatus will be required; confine the use of
    it in a suitable container for later                                           water spray to cooling of unaffected stock, thus
    safe disposal                                                                  avoiding the accumulation of polluted run-off
                                                                                   from the site

                                                                                                                                         

    WASTE DISPOSAL                               NATIONAL INFORMATION
                                                                                                                                         

    Heptachlor is not readily                    National Occupational Exposure           United Nations No. 2761, 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; if            National Poison Control Centre:
    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         Local trade names
    disposal of toxic wastes

                                                                                                                                         
    

    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. The intention is to give the
    reader a representative, but not an 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.a

    7.1  Previous Evaluations by International Bodies

    IARC (1982) concluded that there is limited evidence for the
    carcinogenicity of heptachlor in experimental animals and that human
    data available "do not allow an evaluation of the carcinogenicity of
    heptachlor or heptachlor epoxide to humans to be made". This
    conclusion was confirmed in 1987.

    The FAO/WHO Joint Meeting on Pesticide Residues (JMPR) has reviewed
    residues and toxicity data on heptachlor on several occasions (in
    1965, 1966, 1967, 1968, 1969, and 1970). In 1970, it set the
    acceptable daily intake (ADI) for man at 0-0.0005 mg/kg body weight.
    This was based on no-observed-adverse-effect levels of:

      -  5 mg/kg diet, equivalent to 0.25 mg/kg body weight per day in the
         rat; and
      -  2.5 mg/kg diet, equivalent to 0.06 mg/kg body weight per day in
         the dog.

    WHO set a guideline value of 0-0.1 g/litre for heptachlor and
    heptachlor epoxide in drinking-water (WHO, 1982).

    In the WHO Recommended Classification of Pesticides by Hazard, the
    oral LD50 "for classification purposes" is 100 mg/kg body weight,
    and the solid technical product is in Class II (moderately hazardous).
    This means that solid formulations containing 15% active ingredient or
    less, fall into

              

    a  The regulations and guidelines of all countries are subject to
       change and should always be verified with the appropriate
       regulatory authorities before application.


    Class III (slightly hazardous). Liquid formulations containing over
    50% active ingredient fall into Class Ib and those containing 3%
    active ingredient or less into Class III.

    A data sheet on heptachlor (WHO/FAO 1975-78) is available from WHO in
    the series "Data Sheets on Pesticides".

    IRPTC (1982) has issued a review on heptachlor in its series
    "Scientific reviews of Soviet literature on toxicity and hazards of
    chemicals".

    7.2  Exposure Limit Values

    Some exposure limit values are given in the table on pages 26-30.

    When no effective date appears in the IRPTC legal file, the year of
    the reference from which the data are taken is indicated by (r).

    7.3  Specific Restrictions

    European Community legislation prohibits the marketing and use of
    plant protection products containing heptachlor. The registration of
    heptachlor in Canada was discontinued in 1985 (1987(r)). Cyprus,
    Ecuador, Finland, the German Democratic Republic, Japan, the USSR, and
    Yugoslavia prohibit the use of heptachlor in agriculture. The USA
    prohibits its use in agriculture with some exceptions. The use of
    heptachlor for various agricultural purposes is prohibited in
    Argentina, Chile, and Venezuela. Use is permitted in agriculture but
    prohibited in domestic sanitation in Brazil. It has never been
    registered for use in Norway. The only accepted uses of heptachlor in
    Finland are as a termiticide in particle-board and in the plywood
    industry (for exported materials), and as a laboratory chemical.


        EXPOSURE LIMIT VALUES

                                                                                                                                         

    Medium      Specification       Country/            Exposure limit description                   Value                Effective
                                    organization                                                                          date
                                                                                                                                         

    AIR         Work-place          Argentina           Maximum permissible concentration (MPC)                           1979
                                                        - Time-weighted average (TWA)                0.5 mg/m3
                                                        - Short-term exposure limit (STEL)           1.5 mg/m3

                                    Austria             Threshold limit value (TLV)                                       1985 (r)
                                                        - Time-weighted average (TWA)                0.5 mg/m3

                                    Belgium             Threshold limit value (TLV)                  0.5 mg/m3            1985 (r)

                                    Bulgaria            Maximum permissible concentration (MPC)      0.1 mg/m3

                                    Finland             Exposure limit value                                              1981 (r)
                                                        - Time-weighted average (TWA)                0.5 mg/m3

                                    Germany,            Maximum work-site concentration (MAK)                             1986 (r)
                                     Federal            - Time-weighted average (TWA)                0.5 mg/m3
                                     Republic of        - Short-term exposure level (STEL)           5 mg/m3

                                    Netherlands         Maximum limit                                                     1985 (r)
                                                        - Time-weighted average (TWA)                0.5 mg/m3

                                    Romania             Maximum permissible concentration (MPC)                           1985 (r)
                                                        - Time-weighted average (TWA)                0.3 mg/m3
                                                        - Ceiling value (CLV)                        0.6 mg/m3

                                    Switzerland         Maximum work-site concentration (MAK)                             1985 (r)
                                                        - Time-weighted average (TWA)                0.5 mg/m3

                                                                                                                                         

    Medium      Specification       Country/            Exposure limit description                   Value                Effective
                                    organization                                                                          date
                                                                                                                                         

    AIR         Work-place          United Kingdom      Recommended limit (RECL)                                          1985 (r)
                                                        - 8-h time-weighted average                  0.5 mg/m3
                                                        - Short-term exposure level (STEL)           2 mg/m3
                                                         (10-min time-weighted average)

                                    USA                 Permissible exposure limit (PEL)                                  1974
                                                        - Time-weighted average (TWA)                0.5 mg/m3

                                    USSR                Maximum allowable concentration (MAC)                             1977
                                                        - Ceiling value (CLV)                        0.01 mg/m3

                                    Yugoslavia          Maximum allowable concentration (MAC)
                                                        - Time-weighted average (TWA)                0.5 mg/m3

    AIR         Ambient             USSR                Maximum allowable concentration (MAC)
                                                        - 1 x per day                                0.001 mg/m3
                                                        - Average per day                            0.0002 mg/m3

    FOOD        Intake from         FAO/WHO             Acceptable daily intake (ADI)
                                                        - With heptachlor epoxide                    0.0005mg/kg          1982 (r)

    AIR         Work-place          Romania             Maximum permissible concentration (MPC)                           1985 (r)
                                                        - Time-weighted average (TWA)                0.3 mg/m3

    FOOD        Intake from         USSR                Acceptable daily intake (ADI)                0.0005 mg/kg         1983

    FOOD        General             Argentina           Maximum limit                                0 - 0.1 mg/kg        1969

                                    Czechoslovakia      Maximum residue limit (MRL)                                       1978
                                                        - For imported food only                     0.01 - 0.5 mg/kg

                                    USSR                Prohibited in all food products                                   1983

                                                                                                                                         

    Medium      Specification       Country/            Exposure limit description                   Value                Effective
                                    organization                                                                          date
                                                                                                                                         

    FOOD        General             USA                 Acceptable residue limit (ARL)
                                                        - Raw agricultural products                  0 - 0.1 mg/kg

    FOOD        Plant               Brazil              Acceptable limit                             0.01 - 0.2 mg/kg

                                    European            Maximum residue limit (cereals)                                   1988
                                     Community          - Cereals                                    0.01 mg/kg
                                                         (Heptachlor + heptachlor epoxide)

                                    FAO/WHO             Extraneous residue limit                     0.01 - 0.5 mg/kg     1982 (r)

                                    Germany,            Maximum residue limit (MRL)                  0.01 - 0.1 mg/kg
                                     Federal
                                     Republic of

                                    India               Maximum tolerable concentration              0.002 - 0.15         1976
                                                                                                      mg/kg 

                                    Italy               Maximum residue limit (MRL)                  0.01 mg/kg           1987 (r)
                                                        (heptachlor + heptachlorepoxide)

                                    Kenya               Maximum limit                                0.01 - 0.5
                                                                                                     mg/kg

                                    Netherlands         Maximum residue limit (MRL)                  0.01 - 0.1           1987 (r)
                                                                                                     mg/kg

                                    Sweden              Maximum tolerable concentration              0.02 - 0.05
                                                                                                     mg/kg

                                    USA                 Acceptable residue limit (ARL)               0.01 - 0.1
                                                                                                     mg/kg

                                                                                                                                         

    Medium      Specification       Country/            Exposure limit description                   Value                Effective
                                    organization                                                                          date
                                                                                                                                         

    FOOD        Plant               Italy               Maximum residue limit (MRL)                  0.01 mg/kg           1987 (r)
                                                        - (Heptachlor + heptachlor epoxide)

                                    Kenya               Maximum limit                                0.01 - 0.5 mg/kg

                                    Netherlands         Maximum residue limit (MRL)                  0.01 - 0.1 mg/kg     1987 (r)

                                    Sweden              Maximum tolerable concentration              0.02 - 0.05
                                                                                                      mg/kg

                                    USA                 Acceptable residue limit (ARL)               0.01 - 0.1 mg/kg

    FOOD        Animal              European            Maximum residue limit (MRL)                                       1988
                                     Community          - In specified products                      0.004 - 0.2 mg/kg
                                                         (section 7.6)

                                    FAO/WHO             Maximum residue limit (MRL)                                       1987 (r)
                                                        - In fat                                     0.15 - 0.2 mg/kg

                                    Germany,            Maximum residue limit (MRL)                                       1984
                                     Federal            - Heptachlor epoxide                         0.01 - 0.2 mg/kg
                                     Republic of

                                    Netherlands         Maximum residue limit (MRL)                                       1987 (r)
                                                        - In fat                                     0.15 - 0.5 mg/kg


                                    Sweden              Maximum tolerable concentration              0.005 - 0.1          1983
                                                                                                      mg/kg

    FEED                            Argentina           Maximum limit                                0 mg/kg              1969

                                    USSR                Prohibition                                  0 mg/kg              1981

                                                                                                                                         

    Medium      Specification       Country/            Exposure limit description                   Value                Effective
                                    organization                                                                          date
                                                                                                                                         

    GOODS                           Argentina           Maximum limit                                                     1971
                                                        - Tobacco                                    0 mg/kg

                                    Germany,            Maximum residue limit (MRL)                                       1984
                                     Federal            - Tobacco                                    0.2 mg/kg
                                     Republic of

    WATER       Ambient             Mexico              Maximum permissible concentration (MPC)                           1973
                                                        - Coastal                                    0.2 g/litre
                                                        - Estuarine                                  0.002 mg/litre
                                                        - Water treated for drinking                 0.018 mg/litre

                                    USSR                Maximum allowable concentration (MAC)        0.05 mg/litre        1983

    WATER       Drinking-           WHO                 Guideline value
                                                        - Heptachlor + heptachlor epoxide            0.1 g/litre

                                                                                                                                         
    

    7.4  Labelling, Packaging, and Transport

    The United Nations Committee of Experts on the Transportation of
    Dangerous Goods classifies heptachlor in:

    Hazard class 6.1:        poisonous substance;

    Packing group II:        a substance presenting a medium risk of
                             poisoning in transport (heptachlor
                             concentrations 80-100%);

    Packing group III:       a substance presenting a relatively low risk
                             of poisoning in transport (heptachlor
                             concentrations of 20-80% (solid) or 8-80%
                             (liquid)).

    The label should read as follows:

    FIGURE 1

    FIGURE 2

    The FAO specifications for plant protection products for heptachlor
    (technical product and formulations) indicate the appropriate
    composition and purity of heptachlor and recommend methods for
    checking these values. The technical product should contain
    approximately 75% heptachlor - this should be stated on the label and
    the composition should not deviate by more than 2% from this. For
    formulations, the heptachlor content should be stated and not deviate
    by more than 10% from this.

    The European Community legislation requires that both heptachlor and
    heptachlor epoxide should be labelled as dangerous substances using
    the symbol:

    FIGURE 3

    The label must read:

          Toxic in contact with skin and if swallowed; danger of
          cumulative effects; possible risks of irreversible effects; wear
          suitable protective clothing and gloves; if you feel unwell,
          seek medical advice (show the label where possible).

    The European Community legislation on labelling of pesticide
    preparations classifies heptachlor in Class Ib for the purposes of
    determining the label for preparations containing heptachlor and other
    active ingredients.

    7.5  Waste Disposal

    In the USA, heptachlor (technical and formulations) is classified as a
    toxic pollutant for which the EPA has set effluent limitations and
    pretreatment standards. Permits are required for discharge from any
    point source into US waters. Hazardous-waste incinerators must achieve
    99.99% destruction of this substance.

    7.6  Other Measures

    The European Community legislation requires that Member States should
    prescribe that, from the time cereals (wheat, rye, barley, oats,
    maize, paddy rice, buckwheat, millet, grain sorghum, triticale) are
    put into circulation,they may not contain (in and on) heptachlor
    residue levels (sum of heptachlor and heptachlor epoxide expressed as
    heptachlor) exceeding 0.01 mg/kg (applicable latest by June 1988).

    The European Community legislation also requires that Member States
    should prescribe that, from the time that foodstuffs of animal origin
    (meat, poultry, milk, butter, cheese, etc.) are put into circulation,
    they may not contain heptachlor residue levels (sum of heptachlor and
    heptachlor epoxide expressed as heptachlor) exceeding 0.2 mg/kg in fat
    of meat and poultry or exceeding 0.004 mg/kg in raw cow's milk, whole
    cream cow's milk, butter, cheese (applicable latest by June 1988).

    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.

    GIFAP (1982)  Guidelines for the safe handling of pesticides during
     their formulation, packing, storage and transport. Brussels,
    Groupement International des Associations Nationales des Fabricants de
    Produits Agrochimiques.

    GIFAP (1983)  Guidelines for the safe and effective use of pesticides.
    Brussels, Groupement International des Associations Nationales des
    Fabricants de Produits Agrochimiques.

    GIFAP (1984)  Guidelines for emergency measures in cases of pesticide
     poisoning. Brussels, Groupement International des Associations
    Nationales des Fabricants de Produits Agrochimiques.

    IRPTC (1983)  IRPTC legal file 1983. Geneva, International Register
    of Potentially Toxic Chemicals, United Nations Environment Programme.

    IRPTC (1985)  IRPTC file on treatment and disposal methods for waste
     chemicals. Geneva, International Register of Potentially Toxic
    Chemicals, United Nations Environment Programme.

    PESTINA, R. (1984)  Prevention, diagnosis, and treatment of
     insecticide poisoning. Geneva, World Health Organization (Report No.
    VBC/84.889).

    SAX, N.I. (1984)  Dangerous properties of industrial materials. New
    York, Van Nostrand Reinhold Company, Inc.

    UNITED NATIONS (1986)  Recommendations on the transport of dangerous
     goods, 4th ed. New York, United Nations.

    US NIOSH/OSHA (1981)  Occupational health guidelines for chemical
     hazards, 3 Vols. Washington, DC, US Department of Health and Human
    Services, US Department of Labor (Publication No. DHHS(NIOSH) 01-123).

    WHO (1984)  EHC No. 38: Heptachlor, Geneva, World Health
    Organization, 81 pp.

    WHO (1986)  The WHO recommended classification of pesticides by
     hazard. Guidelines to classification 1986-87. Geneva, World Health
    Organization (Unpublished report VBC/86.1).

    WHO/FAO (1975-87)  Data sheets on pesticides. Geneva, World Health
    Organization.

    WORTHING, C.R. & WALKER, S.B. (1983)  The pesticide manual, 7th ed.
    Lavenham, Lavenham Press Limited, British Crop Protection Council.

    


    See Also:
       Toxicological Abbreviations
       Heptachlor (EHC 38, 1984)
       Heptachlor (ICSC)
       Heptachlor (PIM 578)
       Heptachlor (FAO Meeting Report PL/1965/10/1)
       Heptachlor (FAO/PL:CP/15)
       Heptachlor (FAO/PL:1967/M/11/1)
       Heptachlor (FAO/PL:1968/M/9/1)
       Heptachlor (FAO/PL:1969/M/17/1)
       Heptachlor (AGP:1970/M/12/1)
       Heptachlor (WHO Pesticide Residues Series 4)
       Heptachlor (WHO Pesticide Residues Series 5)
       Heptachlor (Pesticide residues in food: 1991 evaluations Part II Toxicology)
       Heptachlor (CICADS 70, 2006)