Know Your Hazard Symbols

Know Your Hazard Symbols

June 1, 2021

Everyone has seen a semi truck labeled with scary-looking symbols on the back that seem to tell drivers to stay far away. These pictograms are required by the U.S. Department of Transportation (DOT) and indicate that the truck is transporting hazardous materials in North Charleston, SC.

The hazardous materials are grouped into nine different classes, and although each placard image may be slightly different, they all display the class number associated with the hazard and have a unique color. Continue reading to learn a bit more about each class and symbol:

  • Class 1: Explosive materials (like fireworks or TNT) are labeled with an exploding bomb and may say, “explosives” or “blasting agents.” These placards are always orange and feature the number one.
  • Class 2: Gases are all in class two, but there are three different types of gas: flammable, non-flammable and poisonous. Because class two is so vast, the placard will have the number two and a particular symbol (which we’ll cover below).
  • Class 3: This class is for flammable liquids and combustible liquids. The red placard will include the number three and a flame symbol. Additionally, the placard will also say what’s on board, like “gasoline” or “fuel oil.”
  • Class 4: For hazmat shipping in North Charleston, SC with flammable solids, the placard will also include the flame symbol; however, this is another wide-open class, so each placard will give more information about the material. For example, it may have the number four and say, “spontaneously combustible.”
  • Class 5: When oxidizer and organic peroxide are on board, the placard must either be all yellow or red on top and yellow on the bottom. The placard also features a flame symbol and the number five.
  • Class 6: A skull and crossbones on a white placard means that the truck is carrying poisonous substances. Class six is divided into two subcategories: toxic substances and infectious substances. The placard will give more information about which of the hazardous materials in North Charleston, SC is being shipped.
  • Class 7: This class is for radioactive materials. A class seven placard may either be yellow or white, but it must include the international symbol for radiation and the number seven.
  • Class 8: A broken test tube with liquid spilling onto a hand and metal pipe means that the truck is carrying corrosive materials. These placards are black and white and indicate that the material on board could burn a person or metal object.
  • Class 9: Placards with black and white stripes on the top half and the number nine indicate miscellaneous hazardous materials. These goods are known to be hazardous but don’t fit into any of the other eight categories.

Trust us for your hazmat shipping needs

If your business involves hazmat shipping in North Charleston, SC, then be sure to use All Points Transport as your shipping partner. We have decades of experience shipping all sorts of hazardous materials—you can trust our team to deliver your goods safely while complying with all DOT regulations.

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