Note from Ellie: It is interesting to read this article because the MBTA tracks runs so close to homes, yards, play areas, and gardens in Newton. The MBTA are using the same herbicides as the ones in this story.
(Beyond Pesticides, July 26, 2007) Children Sprayed at Day Care with Railroad Herbicides. A company with previous pesticide violations will likely face a significant fine after accidentally spraying children at a day care in Virginia last week with herbicides. Several children were directly sprayed and at least three experienced symptoms of acute pesticide poisoning.
The company, NaturChem, was hired by Norfolk Southern to spray a section of railroad tracks, which they do every three years to suppress unwanted plants along the tracks. Sixteen children were playing outside at the day care, adjacent to the tracks as the NaturChem tanker went by. Four children, who were playing along the fence, were directly sprayed. While day care staff took them inside, washed them and changed their clothes immediately, at least three children had acute symptoms following their exposure, including a bloody nose, diarrhea, eye irritation, and blistering.
Read more here. And be sure to read the comments.
Also: HIRING A LANDSCAPER OR PEST CONTROL PROFESSIONAL