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Haz-mat regulations

Discussion in 'General Expediter Forum' started by flattop40, Jul 1, 2009.

  1. flattop40

    flattop40 Rookie Expediter

    Ok, question for y'all. For a sprinter/cargo van what are the rules and regs for hauling haz-mat?

    I was told we could haul up to 1k#, I have also been told there are no requirements for us. Do we have to placard? if so for any? over a certain amount? Do we then have to scale? I have hauled "haz-mat" just twice and they were both a 55 gal drum of paint, however, had a friend call me the other day and he got a load and had 6-55 gal drums of something that was a "level 3". He asked for my advice and I didn't know what to tell him.

    To make a long story short he took the load and did not placard and did it without incident but if he would have been pulled over what if any trouble would he have been in?
  2. cheri1122

    cheri1122 Expert Expediter

    If you may haul HM, it is extremely important that you know what the law requires. 'Hearsay' isn't going to help you, if faced by a DOT inspection, either - you need to know what the law says, not what other drivers say, ok?
    Best source is the manual "Hazardous Materials Compliance Pocketbook" available at your local truckstop.
    It's what you didn't know that'll bite you, and the bite in this case can be ferocious!
  3. cheri1122

    cheri1122 Expert Expediter

    I think both you and your friend have been poorly served by your Safety Depts [if any], and are risking a great deal, in consequence.
  4. flattop40

    flattop40 Rookie Expediter

    Thank you Cheri for the information on the HMCP but do they also cover NON-DOT regulated trucks? I also thought that maybe other drivers might get some useful information from this thread. My saftey department is top of the line, can't say for sure about my friends, but during orientation the CV/SPR's were not required to sit thru the Haz-mat part. There must be a reason for this. Is there a bite and if so how bad?
  5. cheri1122

    cheri1122 Expert Expediter

    Quoting the abovementioned handbook: "Drivers are responsible for following the requirements prescribed in the HM regulations. Drivers can be fined for not complying with the parts of the HM regs that relate to them. A person who violates the requirement in the regulation is liable for a penalty of not more than $50,000 and not less than $250 for each violation."
    I hauled placardable HM in a CV with ConWay, and know that adhering to the letter of the law is critical - but you need to know the law to do so.
    I'm not willing to advise, as it's been a few years since I drove a van, except to say that the Safety Dept doesn't seem to have done it's job, since you need to ask. You can educate yourself, though, by getting the book and learning.
  6. flattop40

    flattop40 Rookie Expediter

    Thank you, your information has been very helpful.

    So lets recap kiddies, don't start a thread that might help others, just get a book and keep your mouth shut.
  7. cheri1122

    cheri1122 Expert Expediter

    If 'hearsay' is what you wanted, there's no shortage at the truckstops - but if the info that can save your butt is what you need, I offered the best information at my disposal.
    How you use it is up to you, but the snide response was uncalled for, IMO.
  8. flattop40

    flattop40 Rookie Expediter

    You are not willing to advise yet all of your posts are giving advise. I specificly asked for advise for CV/Sprinters and after several posts from you you then you say you can't give advise. I'm confused :confused: so should I get the book or not?
  9. cheri1122

    cheri1122 Expert Expediter

    Flattop: either you are deliberately antagonizing me, or you're too stupid to be driving a CMV.
    Which is it? :confused:
  10. aileron

    aileron Rookie Expediter

    You can haul hazmat loads with a van, up to the weight that the van can legally carry. You need to observe all those rules that you had to study to get your hazmat endorsement, like stop at rr tracks, not go through cities, don't smoke within xx feet, keep the paperwork within reach while strapped by the seat belt
    If the load is heavier than 1000 lbs (i think it says 1001 or more) you need to placard, and of course log and scale.

    Some shipping companies have their own rules and regulations. I went to pick up drum with 200 lbs of some paint and they would not load it on my van because there is no separation between the driver and cargo area. This was their rule.
    Last edited: Jul 1, 2009
  11. iceroadtrucker

    iceroadtrucker Seasoned Expediter

    Tractor Trailer
    Make sure you sprinter or van can legaly carry the weight.
    If its explosives dynamite tnt u bet you plaq
    if its 1001 lbs or more ya betcha
    if its posion serine gass you better believe it.
    By the way flat since you drive a van if you got hazmat you better buy you a log book as you will need one when you cross the scales with that plaquered van.
    But if you ask greg or turtle OR LDB they can you the short and skinny about a van.
    Make sure you got the udated hazmat books.
    And check with your safety dept to make sure your got the hazmat permits and are compliant. And that you got hazmat on your license. Ok.
    Last edited: Jul 1, 2009
  12. LDB

    LDB Expert Expediter

    If your safety department does not have vans sit through hazmat I presume they never put hazmat in a van. If they do put hazmat in a van but don't have them sitting through that part of orientation I wouldn't call them top of the line. I can't offer specifics for van drivers other than I'd presume the placard requirements are the same 1001 pounds as for trucks. It's always a good idea to have the HM handbook on hand. That said, it's also good to ask questions on EO as long as you are willing to carefully review the answers and confirm through official sources before taking/using any of them.
  13. Turtle

    Turtle Administrator Staff Member

    If you have a HAZMAT endorsement, then you should know the rules already. If you don't have a HAZMAT endorsement, then you can't haul HAZMAT, anyway.

    HAZMAT is defined as hazardous materials that must be placarded. If it's HAZMAT, but not in a placardable amount, it ain't HAZMAT, and you can haul it without a HAZMAT endorsement. There are some materials that are placardable only if they weight 1001 pounds or more, but at 1000 pounds or less, it's not placardable, and thus is not HAZMAT, and therefore you don't need a HAZMAT endorsement to haul it.

    So, to answer your original question of, "For a sprinter/cargo van what are the rules and regs for hauling haz-mat", the answer is, the rules are exactly the same for Sprinters and vans as for any other vehicle, except that if you aren't placarded as a Sprinter or van (or station wagon or Prius), you aren't a commercial vehicle. If you're placarded, you're a commercial vehicle (and are instantly DOT regulated), and you must comply with all the rules and regulations of a commercial motor vehicle, including scaling and logging (and actually observing the correct HOS regulations).

    I use the term myself, but there is actually no such thing as non-placardable HAZMAT, as in the case of the single 55 gallon drum of paint. I call it that, because it refers to material that is not HAZMAT, but would be if it were 1001 pounds or more. Now, there are HAZMAT materials that are placardable in any amount at all, even one pound, or one ounce (like plutonium, for example), but for the most part, few of those things can be carried in a van in the first place, because they must be physically separated from the driver (inhilation hazards, explosives, some poisons, etc.).

    As for your friend, if he had been pulled over and was actually carrying placardable HAZMAT, he'd be in deep doo-doo, and so would his carrier. If you pick up something that has HAZMAT labels on the freight, check the BOL to see how it's labeled, and the weight. For example, a skid of 5 gallon buckets of HAZMAT paint will have HAZMAT placard on each bucket, but that in and of itself doesn't make it HAZMAT. If it weighs more than 1000 pounds it is, but if it's 1000 pounds or less it's not, and it should say whether it is or not on the BOL. If it's material that isn't placardable at less then 1001 pounds, and the BOL has the HAZMAT column checked, make 'em change the BOL to reflect the non-HAZMAT nature of the freight.

    Not sure what "Level 3" is, it all depends on the UN# of the material itself. There's PG III (Packing Group), and there's Class 3, which is the flammable liquids. His 6 drums were probably Class 3 Flammable Liquids, and if so were almost certainly more than 1001 pounds. Most paint drums are in the 500-700 pound per-drum range, but some of the base paints and polymers are half that. But most of the bases and polymers aren't usually regulated, regardless of the amount (except for a reportable quantity in case of a spill).

    In vans, most often the confusion over HAZMAT or not comes with paints, solvents and things like batteries (of which RLENT has a great story he can relate).

    I highly recommend getting a HAZMAT endorsement, even if you never haul HAZMAT, or at least studying that part of the Driver's License Manual in your state and then taking the practice tests at Commercial Drivers' License (CDL) Sample Tests (an awesome resource). That way you'll know what you're dealing with, you'll know what's in the truck next to you on the highway, you'll know what to do and what not to do in case of an emergency, you'll know how to read the HMCP, you'll know lots of things.
  14. Dreammaker

    Dreammaker New Recruit

    Thanks for the link. I've found a couple of practice hazmat exams on the web to refresh my memory before I have to renew my license. I'll add your link to my collection.
  15. highway star

    highway star Seasoned Expediter

    What a childish response. What are you, 12 or something? Cheri's response was excellent advice. On a matter this important wouldn't you rather have the info come from "the" source, than from forum members who may, or may not, know what they're talking about? Or, is it just to much effort to find the info yourself? Did you do a forum search? You may be surprised to know that hazmat has come up before.
  16. geo

    geo Active Expediter

    also there are a lot of hazmat that require a air tight bulkhead to carried in any amount as if you inhale cause all kinds of problems

    i just renewed my lic and took hazmad off the lic
    and will not carried any amount of hazmad
    as cost of endorement didn't add up for the cost of it
    also why should i have to be finger printed and back ground
    feel insluted by having to do this
    so protesting by getting it on my lic
  17. flattop40

    flattop40 Rookie Expediter

    Thank you turtle, this post has been most helpful. So, if I read this correctly the 2 times I hauled the paint I was NOT in violation because both times the weight was something like 600#, hence the under 1000# and then not considered HAZMAT. Now my friend on the other hand got lucky. I won't mention what company he is leased to as they are an advertiser on this site.

    As to Cheri I believe an apology is in order for your defamation of yours truely and the company I lease to. The saftey dept. obviously has the load planners and customer service reps trained and have never offered me a load that I could not take. Your constant targeting of my posts has got to stop. I would not consider a post by Turtle as "hearsay". I respect his knowledge in the industry. Do you? Oh, and please don't PM me anymore and call me names like
    There is an old saying "people in glass houses shouldn't get naked because the world will see who you truely are" Cheri you are naked.
  18. LDB

    LDB Expert Expediter

    OK, this thread too has far too much direct personal messaging of an unacceptable nature. It's apparently time to stop reading posts by some members and definitely stop replying to posts by some members unless mature civility can be restored. I'm really exhausted from all the moderator work recently. I trust there will be no need for any more and I can go back to just reading again.
  19. aileron

    aileron Rookie Expediter

    Good luck with making them change anything. If it's got an X in the appropriate column on the BOL, it is going to stay that way.

    One time I had to pick up one drum of some chemical, and the proper shipping name was misspelled according to the hazmat book. I could not get them to change it even after showing them in the book. They started getting nasty...
  20. JohnMueller

    JohnMueller Moderator Staff Member


    Turtle did give some excellent "refresher" hazmat training in his post. His words are correct. Couple of additional pointers for you. Look at the Bills of Lading on each and every shipment you haul. Hazmat bills of lading must list the hazardous materials first. Many Hazmat BOL's will also have a Red border to them and may also contain a "column" that is checked if the commodity is hazardous.

    He is also correct that some materials are considered "Hazardous" when in quantities greater 1,000 pounds by themselves, or in combination with other hazardous materials, and these loads would require placcards. Keep in mind that some materials, such as Class A and B Explosives, Radioactive and some of the Toxic (by inhalation), are placcardable, regardless of quantity.

    You may encounter "ORM-D" products. ORM-D products are materials normally considered hazardous, but because they are packaged in smaller containers, and intended for consumers to purchase off the shelf at stores, they are not required to be placcarded - regardless of the quantity. In other words you could leagally haul 3,500 pounds of ORM-D products in your van without placcarding.

    As for hauling any amount of hazmat in a cargo van - I have never been a proponent of that. Regardless of how great of a bulkhead you think you have in a van, there is NO protection for you, the driver, from the hazardous materials should a spill or leak occur. Think of how many times you have hauled non-hazardous products, such as "coated" or "treated" auto parts and have become sensitive to the smells from the product in your van.

    Anytime you are unsure if loads are hazmat, you should contact the Safety Department at your Carrier. There is not one of the major Expedite companies that DOES NOT have a top-notch Safety Director.

    Hope this helps.

    aka John Mueller, CDS
    Safety Director - Premium Transportation Logistics

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