Five Tips for Hazmat Shipping Compliance

Five Tips for Hazmat Shipping Compliance

January 11, 2021

In the world of hauling in North Charleston, SC, hazmat shipping is the most complex. State and international regulation permits take time, and there are limits on hazmat and overweight hauling. Your best course of action is to outsource hazmat shipping to trucking companies that specialize in it. But if you wish to conquer hazmat compliance on your own, here are five tips to make that happen:

  • Classify your material: There are nine classes of hazardous materials. They include explosives (class 1), gases (class 2), flammable and combustible liquids (class 3), flammable solid, spontaneously combustible and dangerous when wet (class 4 plus three divisions), oxidizer and organic pesticide (class 5 plus two divisions), poison and poison inhalation hazard (class 6), radioactive (class 7), corrosive (class 8) and miscellaneous (class 9). You need to review these classes and designate them on your safety data sheet. This step helps haulers and drivers take proper precautions.
  • Talk to your carriers: The largest carriers handle hazardous material, and they all have different preferences and procedures. Call your chosen carrier before you ship, so you meet their requirements. Besides regulatory requirements, shipping carriers may add other conditions to ensure their workers’ safety and avoid liability claims.
  • Use correct packaging: The U.S. Department of Transportation requires specific packaging for different classes of hazardous material. For example, dangerous liquids must be stored in drums made from steel, aluminum or plastic. Once you classify your material, check regulations for packaging requirements. Failure to do so leaves you vulnerable to fines but also places people in danger.
  • Learn marking and labeling: Each hazardous material classification requires labeling. For example, class 2 materials (gases) must have an “inhalation hazard” label. Other labels include warnings to keep away from heat or water, keep packages at a specific orientation (“this side up”) or indicate an explosion risk. Even if you make the earlier steps a DIY effort, this one likely requires expert intervention. You do not want to risk the dangers or fines that arise from improper labeling.
  • Complete shipping papers: Depending on the carrier, you may need additional documents. When completing them, have the UN identification number, hazard class, packing group and the quality, number and type of packages available. Include shipper’s certification and emergency contact information if something goes wrong during shipping. If you do not complete these papers accurately, it delays the shipment.

The fine for violating hazardous material shipping requirements is $77,114 per violation with a maximum civil penalty of $179,933. When you consider that shortcomings are an expensive risk, it may be a better idea to outsource these services to a shipper with hazardous material experience.

All Points Transport, offers hazmat and overweight load services in North Charleston, SC and nationwide. If you wish to delegate hazmat hauling to someone who knows the state and international regulation permits and how to ship your materials safely, we are here for you. Get in touch with us today to receive an estimate and outsource hazmat handling to an experienced shipper.

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