An investigation into the hospitalization of a 10-year-old in West Palm Beach, Florida, revealed that the pesticide exposure that caused brain damage was the result of faulty equipment and poor training.
Peyton McCaughey was hospitalized on Aug. 17, just one day after his family was given the OK to return to their home following fumigation. The fumigation company, Sunland Pest Control, used equipment to test the safety of the air in the home after the job was completed — which authorities found was not “in working order.”
The gas used in the fumigation was one known as Vikane or Zythor, which can only be purchased once fumigators participate in a program to ensure they’re properly trained for it. A report of the investigation stated that Sunland Pest Control had not participated in the programs and, as a result, was unable to purchase the gas from manufacturers.
McCaughey returned with his family to their home on Aug. 16, and the boy soon began vomiting. The next day, his father, sister and grandmother were all vomiting.
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He was taken, along with his sister, to the emergency room by their mother. All three were subsequently diagnosed with chemical inhalation.
Recent reports suggested that McCaughey’s condition has improved since being admitted to the hospital, with uncle Ed Gribben saying he was “making progress every day.”