Top Safety Precautions For Transporting Bulk Chemicals

The transportation of bulk chemicals is vital to the nation. The safe transportation of those chemicals is very important to the people involved in transporting them, the communities that they’re going through, and the organizations that will be receiving them.


What Is A Hazardous Chemical?


Before we can talk about how to safely transport hazardous chemicals, we need to know what a hazardous chemical is. If a substance meets any one or more of the following conditions, it is considered to be hazardous:

  • It’s hazardous if it’s flammable

  • If it’s corrosive, it’s hazardous

  • If it’s toxic, it’s hazardous

  • If it’s reactive, it’s hazardous


The Classifications Of Dangerous Materials


  • A Class 1 Dangerous Material is anything that is explosive

  • A Class 2 Dangerous Material is defined as a gaseous substance

  • A Class 3 Dangerous Material is defined as flammable liquid

  • A Class 4 Dangerous Material is defined as flammable solid

  • A Class 5 Dangerous Material is defined as chemicals that oxidize

  • A Class 6 Dangerous Material is defined as anything that’s toxic and infectious

  • A Class 7 Dangerous Material is anything that is radioactive

  • A Class 8 Dangerous Material is a chemical that is corrosive

  • A Class 9 Dangerous Material is anything else that is considered dangerous


Who Regulates The Transportation Of Hazardous Substances?


In the United States, there is the HMTA, which stands for the “Hazardous Materials Transportation Act.” This is considered to be the law that deals with transporting hazardous materials in the U.S.


Risks Of Transporting On The Road


A vehicle that overturns while hauling dangerous materials is a great risk. Improper maintenance can cause problems. Insufficient inspections cause lots of problems. Improper training causes problems.


The Solutions:


Inspect the vehicle properly. This includes checking the valves, the wiring, and the wipers. Make sure that the vehicle has fire extinguishers that are in working condition. The tank should be checked to make sure that it has been cleaned properly. Make sure that there’s an emergency kit that has safety goggles and the proper paperwork.


Rail Transportation


The risks involved in rail transportation are derailing, collisions, and the lack of good inspections. Improper maintenance is also a risk. Using improper tank cars is a risk as well.


The solution to these problems includes making sure that the cargo is properly labeled. The railroad cars need to be inspected thoroughly. It’s important to make sure that the load is the right size. It’s important to make sure that there’s an emergency team available. Make sure that the rail routing goes through unpopulated areas.


Boat Transportation


The risks with transporting by water involve improper inspection and maintenance. People need to be properly trained.


In order to take care of those problems, it’s important to make sure that the hull is suitable and properly ventilated. Ensure that navigational safety standards are adhered to and strictly enforced. Make sure that the tank is coated properly. Make sure that the crew is properly trained.


  • Never Transport Hazardous Materials With Food

  • Never use any container that is designated to haul food for any other purpose. It’s for food only.

  • Segregate Mixed Classes Of Hazardous Chemicals

  • Keeping materials apart and in their correct containers reduces lots of risk. Store incompatible substances separately.

  • Make Sure That Chemicals Cannot Move When They’re In Transit

  • If dangerous chemicals are properly loaded and cannot move, bounce, or slide around, a lot of risks can be eliminated. Brace the hazardous materials properly.

  • Keep Accurate Records

  • The proper paperwork is legally required. Make sure that the paperwork is proper and up-to-date.


Following the proper procedures for transporting hazardous materials will ensure everyone’s safety. Not only that, but the materials will arrive in good condition. Risks are reduced. Everyone benefits.