Important Guidelines to Follow for Hazmat Shipping

Important Guidelines to Follow for Hazmat Shipping

July 10, 2019

Many of the materials that we use and rely on for agriculture, industrial purposes and even household cleaning are composed of hazardous materials (hazmat). The United States government heavily regulates shipping standards for packages, freight and even personal passenger luggage containing hazmat.

Even small amounts of hazmat can become dangerous in the right circumstances, and many people carry or ship hazmat without realizing that they’re breaking federal law or creating a safety hazard. It’s important to possess a thorough and clear understanding of what exactly a hazmat is, and the best shipping safety standard for that material, any time you’re shipping a substance that may be considered hazardous.

Thankfully, the U.S. Department of Transportation (DOT) outlines clear rules and safety standards that shipping companies and individuals can use to ensure that they’re transporting hazmat safely. If you’re in doubt about the safety of your hazmat shipping practices, you should consult with a company specializing in hazmat transportation in North Charleston, SC.

There are a number of steps that you should follow when it comes to shipping hazmat, including the following:

  • Follow the SDS: First, you’ll need to determine whether or not the substance you’re shipping is, in fact, hazardous. The Safety Data Sheet (SDS), issued by the DOT, is a helpful tool that you can use to determine whether or not you’re shipping a hazardous material. Commonly shipped hazardous materials include batteries, flammable liquids (like alcohol) and industrial chemicals.
  • Train employees: If you are, in fact, shipping a hazardous material, the first thing that you’ll need to do is train employees on proper hazmat handling and shipping guidelines. This training should be comprehensive and cover a wide range of substances, even if you don’t deal with them on a regular basis.
  • Determine quantities and observe packaging standards: Next, you’ll need to determine the quantities of hazmat that you’re planning on shipping, and identify the correct packaging standards for the material in question. Many materials are restricted by volume, so make sure to consult with an expert before loading your freight. In addition to labeling, you may need to display a permit to ship some materials.
  • Label the freight: Once you’ve obtained the necessary packaging standards and permits, you’ll have to label the freight. The labels should be clearly displayed, identifying the material you’re shipping, its volume and any necessary permits that you’ve obtained. If you’re shipping internationally, you’ll also need to prepare customs declarations prior to shipping the freight.

If you find yourself needing to ship hazmat, but are unsure of the best way to navigate this relatively complex process, don’t despair—reach out to a shipping company specializing in hazmat transportation in North Charleston, SC. All Points Transport is a trusted intermodal freight company offering comprehensive cargo shipping services designed to meet a wide range of needs.

We’re capable of assisting clients with both inland hazmat shipping as well as export and import services. Reach out to one of our friendly representatives today to learn more about what we can do for you!

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