Following from our Top 5 tips for Pallet Packing and What Case Should you be using for Packing Machines?, we are now here to discuss how to specifically pack dangerous goods to ensure safety during shipment.
Making sure that you know the rules for properly packing dangerous goods is one of the main keys for a successful machine move. There will be those who will try to cut corners and priorities saving costs to compensate for safety. However, this will mostly backfire with high cost of damaged goods or even loss of lives, harming your reputation and even your mental health.
Our experts have compiled the 4 key areas you should evaluate when packing dangerous and hazardous goods for your company so that your operations can run as smoothly as possible.
You may think you already know how to classify dangerous from safe. However, some of you will be surprised to hear that even things like glue and aerosols are classified as dangerous goods. This is because dangerous and hazardous goods are universally defined as any solid, liquids, or gases with hazardous properties which, if not carefully controlled, present a potential hazard to human health and safety, infrastructure and/or their means of transport, according to DSV Global Transport and Logistics.
Although it is easier to pack than most material, aerosols and glue, and any adhesives, are classed as dangerous because of their highly flammable and toxic properties.
Dangerous and hazardous goods do not have common characteristics. It can be pungent, odorless, coloured, transparent, hot, cold, and so on. Neither of these characteristics are used to evaluate the degree of hazards that objects can present when mishandled. Anything, big or small, can be a hazardous and dangerous item.
Seeing has something as serious as human lives are at stake when handling these goods, there are different, and consistently updated, regulations specific for the type of shipment you will be using, and it is your responsibility to be aware of all of them.
For air, this is IATA Dangerous Goods Regulations made by the International Air Transport Association. It is the most up-to-date and user friendly regulation in the industry which guides you in preparing and documenting for dangerous packing and shipments by air.
Next, for sea, this is the International Maritime Dangerous Goods Code (IMDG Code) which regulates and governs all goods getting shipped by sea. It is intended to protect the crew members on the ship, reduce marine pollution as much as possible, and maximise transport safety. It was last updated as recently as 1st January 2020 and gives you guidance on areas such as packing, labeling, placarding, markings, stowage, emergency response and so on. It is mandatory to follow the IMDG code.
Finally, unlike the IMDG code and the IATA regulation which are both implemented internationally, it is a different story for roads since it is different depending on your country. In Europe, we have the ADR which is the European Agreement concerning the International Carriage of Dangerous Goods by Road. This has been updated as recently as January 2019 and it decides on the requirements for classification, packaging, labelling, and certification of dangerous goods, as well as specific vehicle and tank requirements.
Your cargo that you use to pack these dangerous goods can also present as a hazard itself. Make sure that you install proper cushioning and multiple wrapping to protect the goods from any potential bumps or shaking, and to minimise the risk of movement or leakages, just like shown in the photo below. As a rule of thumb, if you are packing multiple different goods at once, it is best practice to pack the most dangerous one nearer the door of the container so that you have easy access to remove and dispose of it should it pose a serious hazard during transit.
Labelling is also extremely important. You must ensure that any old labels are removed to avoid confusion and more hazard should something go wrong. Attaching the correct labels which clearly communicates the level of danger and potential hazard the package contains is the best strategy to minimise risk as much as possible. It is also a good idea to attach your name, number, and address so that people know who to contact if something happens on the spot.
All of the above is redundant if the people who are handling the packing of the dangerous goods itself are not aware of the correct way to pack. Ensure that your people know the 3 regulations mentioned above, the IATA, IMDG, and ADR for air, sea and road, respectively. Do not train them only on their specific role but also on the whole supply chain so that they can make better judgements and be as efficient and effective as possible.
Here at Logos Logistics, we have 17 years of experience in providing services in stress-free move management solutions including transportation, storing your machinery in our temperature controlled purpose built facility, and more for a wide range of industries, all while having robust insurance. So if anything goes wrong, it's on us.
Our accreditation of ISO9001:2015, ISO45001, IATA, IMDG, & ADR in combination with our 17 years of experience means that you are guaranteed an excellent service from Logos Logistics.
We also offer the additional service of case making and export packing, storage, worldwide Freight, and Air flotation, all by land, sea and road.
With our insurance all inclusive, promising that we will pay for any potential damage to your machinery, we will give you the piece of mind that your high value machinery is being taken care of allowing you place more focus, time, and money into other aspects of your business so that you can get ahead of your competitors or get you product or service into the market faster.
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