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April - May 2008 Newsletter

Upcoming Dangerous Goods Training Dates at JFK and on the web

May 6, 2008 (Tuesday) - AIR RECURRENT – class is filled – no vacancies.


May 20 (Tuesday) - HAZMAT IMPORTS

Our On Line Training Program for the Cosmetics Industry - available 24/7.
Our complete 2007 training schedule is posted on this website.

Our on line training program for the cosmetics industry has been extremely successful and we are now receiving favorable feedback over our automated reminder service concerning recurrent training.

The automated reminder service has been extended to all of our training programs and applies to all trainees who added their e-mail address to their tests over the past three years.

We have added a new training program for importers, customs brokers and freight forwarders as a result of a number of requests that we received after a dangerous goods presentation that we participated in for the Long Island Import Export Association www.liiea.org

Our complete 2008 training schedule is available on the website - click on "Training" on the opening page.

Check your current training records - if you are close to the expiration date make your reservations now for any of our classes throughout the year. We always remind attendees a few days prior to the class.

Material Safety Data Sheets (MSDS) - New Service

As is the case with your company, our time is precious to us as we try to serve our regular clients with training, consulting, documentation and packing services.

In order to continue the MSDS review service we will be charging an annual fee of $250.00. No limits will be placed on those companies that sign up for the service. All other requests will be denied with a statement that we regret that we can no longer provide the free service. Your company is encouraged to sign up and pay the fee via our website. Look for the link on our opening page.

As the saying goes - "garbage in - garbage out." In the past we have been unable to help clients when the MSDS lacks enough information to provide a responsible report or assessment. LET THE BUYER BEWARE.

We remind our training clients that your employees who have received dangerous goods training from us receive MSDS training as part of our regular curriculum and you may already have qualified employees on your staff  that are ready, willing and able to read and interpret the MSDS.


U.S. National Transportation Safety Board:

The NTSB has eight safety recommendations before DOT's PHYMSA at the present time. Seven of those eight deal with lithium batteries. That gives us some insight about the safety concerns about lithium batteries.

We continue to see confusion on the part of distributors and resellers of lithium batteries in understanding the special provision A-45 in the ICAO and IATA regulations concerning "non-restricted" batteries. We also see considerable confusion by air carriers and freight forwarders and that special provision generates a lot of interest and time during our initial and recurrent training programs for shipments by air.

In our opinion, the most immediate "fix" appears to be dropping A-45 completely, making all lithium batteries completely regulated and restricting them to cargo aircraft only. That would take the guesswork out of trying to determine whether the batteries are regulated or not regulated and eliminate the use of inferior packing. Since all the packages would require hazard labels we feel strongly that it ought to also provide better handling procedures and less risk of damaged shipments as cargo personnel would easily be aware of the dangers involved.

The U.S. D.O.T.'s Pipeline and Hazardous Materials Safety Administration has two state variations dealing with lithium batteries: USG-02 and USG-03.

ICAO and IATA have 4 special provisions dealing with lithium batteries: A-45, A-88, A-99, A-154. Read them carefully before you ship lithium batteries.

U.S. D.O.T. / PHMSA – More on Lithium Batteries:

The Pipeline and Hazardous Materials Safety Administration held a special public meeting in Washington D.C. on April 11 to discuss the following issues related to lithium batteries:

  1. Recent transportation incidents;
  2.  Probable causes of battery incidents;
  3.  NTSB recommendations;
  4. PHMSA/FAA activities; and
  5. Action plan with next steps/additional actions.

We will pass on the results of the meeting in our next newsletter.

If you use any type of battery, or carry batteries in your luggage, or ship batteries, please read and download and pass on to coworkers the FAA Battery Incident Report that is set up as a link on our home page.

Transportation safety is our business. But it is your business too. And, it is the law!

Remember, you or a loved one might be on a flight. Wouldn’t it be comforting to know that everyone else on the flight followed the rules as well as the air freight shippers.

Mark Your Calendar

30th Annual Conference and Hazardous Materials Transportation Exposition
November 5-7, 2008
Hyatt Regency Savannah
Savannah, Georgia

Check the DGAC website for additional information – www.dgac.org

If you are not a DGAC Member, you should consider joining this great organization.
DGAC is a huge source of information for us all year long.

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