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State

Pilot fined for crop-dusting incident in Illinois

PESOTUM — A crop-dusting pilot is being fined $750 for mistakenly spraying almost 80 teenagers with fungicide as they detassled corn in eastern Illinois this summer.

The (Champaign) News-Gazette reports the pilot was fined for violating the Illinois Pesticide Act during the July 25 accident.

A spokesman for the Illinois Department of Agriculture says the fine was issued by an administrative law judge.

The teenagers were working in Pesotum (puh-SOH'-tuhm) to cut the pollinating tassels off corn plants when they were hit by the chemical being sprayed on an adjacent field.

They were decontaminated and treated for minor ailments, mostly irritated skin.

The town is 15 miles south of Champaign.

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