City successful in Two Step crackdown

The substance is illegal and dangerous for human consumption.

Street vendors have been warned to stop selling Two Step. Picture: Siyabonga Sesant/EWN

CAPE TOWN - The City of Cape Town says operations to rid the streets of Two Step, a dangerous pesticide that is used as rat poison, have proven successful.

Eyewitness News revealed late last month that traders in Cape Town's CBD were selling the poisonous substance for as little as R5 to residents desperate to rid their homes of rats.

It is illegal however, as well as dangerous for human consumption.

The city's JP Smith said officials will continue with their inspections regardless.

"We saw the poisons disappear after that. In subsequent inspections we have not found these poisons recurring."

Officials from law enforcement, health and the national Department of Agriculture swooped in on a number of informal traders in the Cape Town CBD on 31 July.

City officials managed to confiscate dozens of boxes of pesticides, including Two Step.

Authorities have also warned traders selling they face harsh penalties if they're caught selling the substance for domestic purposes.

Residents living in rat infested areas have also been asked not to use the pesticide.

Two Step is an organophosphate, or pesticide.

One of its effects on the body is to slow the heart down until it eventually stops.

It is normally mixed with food and placed on the floor to attract rodents, but in some cases, is mistakenly consumed by toddlers.