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July - August 2002 Newsletter

News Archive
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Your HAZMAT quiz for August , 2002:
Just roll your mouse over the for the answer!

1. What is placed on the exterior of vehicles containing dangerous goods to denote the hazard class:
(a) Placard (b) Product Name (c) Label (d) None of the these

2. Gases in division _______ represent a flammable hazard
(a) 1.1 (b) 1.2 (c) 2.1 (d) 2.3

3. A division 4.1 material is dangerous because it can
(a) Damage your skin (b) Corrode metal (c) Ignite easily

4. ____________ is a common example of class 8 material
(a) Gasoline (b) Dynamite (c) Sulfuric Acid

5. Class 3 is dangerous because it releases _________ at a temperature of 60.5°C
(a) Flammable Vapors (b) Oxygen (c) Toxic Gases

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What's New?

If you haven't noticed yet, we have added a tour of our website so that it will be easier for you to get around our site. You can take a Flash Version or a Text Version tour of our entire site. Even if you are a frequent visitor perhaps you have missed one or more of our website's features. Try them out. The tour is located in the upper left side of the welcome page.

Where have we been?
Like everyone else, we get sidetracked too. Each time that we sat down to finish June's Newsletter some important issues would demand our immediate attention. Before we knew it, our July Fourth Holiday sneaked up on us. Yes, we tried to catch our breath with a four-day holiday.

As we resumed operations on 8 July business got busier and busier. Corrective hazmat packing services, specialty packaging projects, and demands for in-house hazmat training have kept us ahead of last year's pace which was a record-breaking year as well as a heart-breaking year (9/11).

What sidetracked us?
Security, security, security! It's difficult to tell at this point who will really be in charge of security.

As we started this newsletter we were reviewing public comments concerning D.O.T.'s Research and Special Programs Administration's HM-232: Hazardous Materials: Security Requirements for Offerors and Transporters of Hazardous Materials.

Just as we thought we were getting a good grasp of things and were ready to file our own comments along came HM-232A: Security Requirements for Motor Carriers Transporting Hazardous Materials; Advance notice of proposed rulemaking (ANPRM); Published 7/16/2002, 67 FR 46622.

"The Research and Special Programs Administration and the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration are examining the need for enhanced security requirements for the motor carrier transportation of hazardous materials. The two agencies are seeking comments on the feasibility of specific security enhancements and the potential costs and benefits of deploying such enhancements. Security measures being considered include escorts, vehicle tracking and monitoring systems, emergency warning systems, remote shut-offs, direct short-range communications, and notification to state and local authorities".

And, right behind that came HM-232B: Revision to Periodic Tire Check Requirement for Motor Carriers Transporting Hazardous Materials; Advance notice of proposed rulemaking (ANPRM); Published 7/16/2002, 67 FR 46622.

This is a proposal by The Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration "to eliminate an outdated requirement for certain motor vehicle operators to stop periodically to check their tires. Eliminating this requirement will enhance the security of hazardous materials shipments".

Naturally, all of this attention to security is due to the terrorist attacks on New York and Washington on September 11, 2001. The Transportation Security Administration, presently part of the U.S. Department of Transportation, has been working diligently to provide a safe and secure transportation network within the United States. Their efforts have been most visible in the airline industry and particularly passenger and cargo screening. But other modes of transportation have received TSA attention as well and many improvements in transportation security have already been implemented, with more sure to follow.

Other cabinet-level Departments and many agencies have also added new security measures to insure protection against further terrorist threats. (Note our report concerning new DOT/RSPA/FMCSA initiatives above).

The U.S. Department of Homeland Security is nearing the stage where it will be starting to spread its wings. The version desired by President Bush will combine 22 federal entities and 170,000 employees under a single department. So far the U.S. Coast Guard, by far the hardest working and most dedicated federal agency, has been placed in Homeland Security, then returned to the D.O.T., and then placed back in Homeland Security. The White House and Congress are hoping for a final version before the end of the year.

Immediate Projects for U.S. Shippers and Carriers:

  1. Draw up a new security program for your company. (HM-232)
  2. Enhance our security programs with new high-tech tools (HM-232A)
  3. Eliminate checking tires during transportation - a security measure (HM-232B)
  4. Review packaging and training operations particularly for air shipments (HM-228).

Packaging Engineers and Distributors of Consumer Commodities

You should review HM-228 very carefully and a related article in our April 2002 Newsletter.

Gripes of the Month!

Shipping clerks who place hazard labels on packages in a square shape instead of a diamond shape.
(45° angle on a point).

Warehouse employees who place on-hand notices over U.N. Specification Package Markings.

Lament of the month:
Security! We recognize the importance of security.....but.....
With every newspaper and TV columnist offering his or her own plans, corporations, Congress, local, state, and federal agency instituting or suggesting new security measures, some even at odds with others, we are reminded of a famous comedian from the 1940-1960's, Jimmy Durante, who often commented on his radio and TV shows - "Everybody is trying to get into the act!"

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