Is America’s Hazmat in Good Hands?

“I’ve never met a dangerous goods professional who told me he or she dreamed of managing hazardous cargo as a child. I’ve never met one who majored in “Hazmat Studies” in college or who even thought much about hazardous materials before taking the job.

Hazardous materials management, as it turns out, is a career many come to without necessarily meaning to. Because of their talents, reliability, achievements, and other qualities, they have been entrusted with protecting employees, property, and the public from the risks posed by materials that have the potential to explode, set aflame, corrode steel, poison, and otherwise damage human health and the environment. Hazardous materials management is a huge responsibility, and those entrusted with it take it seriously.”

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Staying on Top of Hazmat Training Requirements

“OSHA’s online “Working With Hazardous Materials” page1 is a useful guide to this topic, ranging from hazards encountered by forklift operators who move hazardous materials to workers handling hazardous chemicals in their workplaces and thus in need of hazard communication training and materials.

The guide covers U.S. Department of Transportation hazmat regulations, which are subdivided by function into four basic areas:

Procedures and/or Policies (49 CFR Parts 101, 106, and 107)
Material Designations (49 CFR Part 172)
Packaging Requirements (49 CFR Parts 173, 178, 179, and 180)
Operational Rules (49 CFR Parts 171, 173, 174, 175, 176, and 177)
It also covers the OSHA HAZWOPER (Hazardous waste operations and emergency response) Standard, 29 CFR 1910.120, which applies to emergency response personnel who respond to a hazmat incident. If the operator of the vehicle moving hazardous materials becomes actively involved in an emergency response, then he or she is considered an emergency responder and is covered by 29 CFR 1910.120(q), it notes.”
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