Shipping tips for Hazmat

Import and export of hazardous material may pose a risk to the property and life of the driver as well as people on road. A hazardous material is a substance that is marked as unsafe by Secretary of transportation and may lead to an unbearable threat to the environment and public. This material should be transported only when certified by the shipper that material met the legal regulatory requirements.

DOT Compliance Requirements

To assure that employees hauling hazardous materials receive adequate training, certification needs to be done. It can be done by maintaining a record of training including details of the preceding three years. The details involved are:
  • Name of employee
  • Recent date of training completion of a hazmat employee
  • Location and details of training material that fulfills five main training areas
  • Details like name and address of a person giving training
  • A certificate issued to the hazmat employee indicating training and testing of an employee is performed successfully

Essential Hazmat Training Requirements

Hazmat training should cover the following basic aspects:
  • Familiarization/Awareness training: Employees should be able to recognize hazardous material easily.
  • Safety training: Guidelines should be given to an employee to address emergency situations like exposure to hazardous materials and techniques to prevent accidents.
  • Security awareness training: Employees should have knowledge about hazmat transportation and its associated risk so that immediate response is made against a security threat. 
  • Function specific training: Employees should receive training of specific functions that need to be performed i.e. based on job responsibilities. 
  • In-depth security training: Training should be given a detailed security plan of a company. It includes a study of security objectives, security processes and measures to be taken in case of a security breach. 

Hazardous material audit

This audit is being conducted by a representative from FMCSA to determine if a company remains compliant with regulations linked with the hazardous material. Its prime aim is to enhance the safety of truck on highways while decreasing the count of avoidable accidents leading to injury. This audit occurs due to a number of reasons like when the business operation of a company is new or a company is chosen for a random audit. FMCSA will undertake this audit at company’s place where they need to show documents like DVIR’s, operational processes documents etc. proving that the company adheres to safety regulations. 

How to pass successfully in "Hazmat Audit"?

To pass this audit, a company needs to plan beforehand and should have their entire team member on board. Consider the following aspects to get prepared for this audit:
  • Perform a review of important records like DVIRs by focusing mainly on safety issues. In case any issue is detected, take proactive action before the audit take place
  • Keeping an eye on the record-keeping activity of every driver since it is highly important that drivers have DVIR’s maintained as it will be useful for business during the DOT audit.
  • A minimum level of insurance should be done for every operator and review that logbooks are accurately maintained by the drivers.
  • The driver should have CDL (Commercial driving license) and should be medically fit to drive a commercial vehicle. 
  • The annual inspection of the vehicle should be performed on a scheduled basis and assure that no vehicle having pending service repair operates on the road. 


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