Dangerous or hazardous goods can be defined as the materials that have inherent hazardous properties, which if not controlled on a proper level can pose a potential hazard to the well-being and health of human beings and can immensely affect the environment.
They can be classified into solids, liquids or gas. Dangerous goods can be odourless or pungent, hot or cold, coloured or transparent and their effects on the environment and human health may range from minimal to fatal.
Hazardous goods can be identified and classified on the basis of hazard such as inflammable, flammable, explosive, poisonous, etc. Therefore, with the long chain of divisions, classes and sub-classes, shipping these dangerous goods all across the globe can be a tedious affair.
When it comes to shipping dangerous goods, there are some regulations that one needs to follow to ensure that it does not affect the living organisms and the environment. Given below are some tips you need to consider while you ship hazardous materials.
1. Know Your Dangerous Goods
When you ship or carry any hazardous materials, it is important for you to know certain facts such as the nature of the goods, regulations associated with its transportation and the inherent risk it possesses. For instance, a tennis ball, nail polish, paint, perfumes are also included in the list of dangerous goods.
2. Follow The Regulations Related To Dangerous Goods
Transportation of dangerous goods is a highly regulated process as it involves human lives and property in all the modes and all stages of transport. The regulations keep changing with the medium of transport. The regulations vary from one country to another and sometimes from state to state located within a country and these are intended to prevent marine pollution and protect the ship’s crew from dangerous materials and to ensure safe transportation.
3. Follow Proper Packaging Procedures And Protocols
There has been a number of incidents where shippers did not follow the dangerous goods packaging instructions and took shortcuts to save costs on packing. However, these incidences gave rise to additional costs in terms of cargo claims and damages and also, loss of life. Therefore, the shippers must ensure that the dangerous goods are properly packed, braced in order to ensure safe transportation.
4. Ensure Suitable Packaging for the Dangerous Goods
In case the shipper is using packing materials like cartons or drums, he needs to ensure that they are compatible with the dangerous goods he wishes to pack. Shippers should implement steps such as labelling and proper documentation to ensure safe shipping of dangerous goods.
5. Train People To Handle Transportation Of Dangerous Goods
Awareness of the people involved in the chain of the shipment can provide safe transportation of dangerous goods. Cargo handlers, equipment operators, truckers, packers, documentary staff, hazardous goods approvers and all other included in the chain should be trained to be aware of the processes of the transportation of hazardous goods.
Packaging and shipping dangerous goods is not an easy task. Proper planning and dangerous goods packaging instructions need to be followed. One can also appoint a logistics that specialises in hazardous materials to ensure the safety of the environment and living organisms.