Language Sites
  • UCAN China
  • UCAN India
  • UCAN Indonesia
  • UCAN Vietnam

Pesticides linked to seven deaths in Philippines

Officials check if upstream water supplies led to deaths in tribal area

Pesticides linked to seven deaths in Philippines

A villager collects drinking water from a river in a remote village of Alamada town. (Photo by Keith Bacongco)

Seven people have died and about a hundred others have been hospitalized after an outbreak of diarrhea in the remote tribal area of Alamada in North Cotabato province that some say may be linked to toxic pesticide use.

Provincial health officer Dr Eva Rabaya told ucanews.com that at least 70 patients remain in hospital and that new cases have been increasing as of Tuesday morning.

Melissa Bagsican, information officer of Alamada town, said the outbreak was affecting the villages of Dado, Lower Dado, Kalamansi and Pigcawaran, near the town’s watershed.

She added that authorities are still trying to verify reports that the outbreak may be linked to the excessive use of herbicides on nearby corn farms.

“Farmers have recently applied herbicide on their cornfields upstream, and the rains washed it down to the water system and rivers,” she said.

Bagsican said health officials have been warning farmers against the improper use of pesticides and herbicides that can produce illness such as chronic diarrhea and skin infections.

Want more stories like this?
Sign up to UCAN Daily or Weekly newsletter.
  • Daily
    Weekly
  • Asia
    Outside Asia
  • LATEST

    • NEW! Premium Content

      Get full access. Start your 14-day free trial today.
    • NEW! Premium Content
      Thank you for registering! Your 14-Day Free Trial begins today.
      Here is your login details to access Premium Content:

      User ID:
      Password: ucan

    • NEW! Premium Content
      Oops! That email address has already been registered. Please try again.