Two People Die After Handling Deadly Pesticide 

By Associated Press

ENTERPRISE, Ala. - Two people were poisoned to death by a pesticide they were using to rid rats from their home, police said. Mary Freenan, 75, and her grandson, Chris
Bell, 35, died Jan. 13 after handling a pesticide product containing aluminum phosphide.

A relative got the chemicals from an acquaintance to give to Freenan and Bell, said Lt. Mike Lolley. Police are investigating how the relative obtained the pesticide because the product can only be sold to trained, licensed professionals with government approval. 

"They were complaining of a rat problem," Lolley said. "He (the relative) came in contact with someone who told them he could get rid of the rats." 

When aluminum phosphide is exposed to air, it produces a deadly phosphone gas, according to the Environmental Protection Agency.

The pesticide is often used to control insects and rodents. It is mainly used at facilities where grain and other commodities are stored.

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