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Moving Inventory: Ship, Ship, Hooray

Safety and procedures are important when packaging hazardous material for shipping. It also can effect your delivery!

No automotive recycler wants to hear from their client, “the package didn’t arrive on time.” Nor do they want to be flagged for violations from the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA) or the U.S. Department of Transportation (DOT). “Paper-work is an important part of the shipping process if you are sending hazardous materials,” says Hannah Cross, Operations Manager at GlobalTranz (formerly known as LPS). GlobalTranz merged with LPS to provide broader range of services to its clients and is a Preferred Vendor in the ARA member benefit program. The company gives ARA a $1 for every shipment made through them from ARA members back to ARA.

“Correctly completed labels tells the driver and the DOT what is being moved. Inaccurate shipper information is a common problem – more information is best. The right placards on the truck and the MSDS sheet filled out correctly gets the shipment to its destination. It is complex to learn how to identify what packing groups there are, but carriers will help if you call them directly. From then on, it becomes cut and dry, so make sure you are provide training on the proper MSDS procedure,” says Cross.

There are many basic things that auto recyclers can do to get their packages moved efficiently. The first is, of course, to train the shipping department on proper procedures, such as understanding shipping classifications. “You have to stay current. The DOT updates these on a regular basis. You need to be aware of it, and stay on top of it,” says Cross.

The biggest shipping violation she sees is improper packaging. “In general, the biggest issue is with the LTL shipped catalytic converter. If it is moving around in the box, the driver won’t pick it up. The basic container must also be suitable for the size of the item. A lot of shippers are filling in extra space. This isn’t best practice. Also, make sure to block and brace the item internally, and again when its loaded, lock and brace. Use steal bands and straps to make sure the item is upright and as secure as it can be. Add bags of air or Styrofoam for the item to stay tight. If you are concerned about using plastic fillers, many recyclers are recycling their paper by shredding it for packing.

“Also, make sure all products are clean when it leaves the facility. If the driver sees something is funny, like a hole in box, straps that are not tight, they will reject the shipment,” Cross advises. “Drain fluids completely. Many recyclers ship products from which fluid was drained in a plastic bag so it doesn’t potentially damage the box or other items on truck,” says Cross. “If its not properly ready to ship, it might not arrive in the condition it was sent.”

The merging of LPS and GlobalTranz is a win for the customer, says Cross. “We are taking advantage of their size and buying power, where we went from 60 LTL carriers to 120 through the merger. We brought to them our managed platform that is tailored to the customer. The customer can log into our system at their convenience, get a quote, auto populate onto the lading, and everything else they did before with us.”

Ultimately, Who is Responsible for What?
In creating a HM shipment, what is your responsibility and what is the carriers? For specific requirements, both carriers and shippers should consult the most current edition of 49 CFR Parts 100-185. General shipper responsibilities are contained in 49 CFR Part 173. According to the FMCSA’s web site:

HM Shipper Responsibilities include:
• DETERMINE WHETHER A MATERIAL MEETS THE DEFINITION OF A “HAZARDOUS MATERIAL”
• PROPER SHIPPING NAME
• CLASS/DIVISION
• IDENTIFICATION NUMBER
• HAZARD WARNING LABEL
• PACKAGING
• MARKING
• EMPLOYEE TRAINING
• SHIPPING PAPERS
• EMERGENCY RESPONSE INFORMATION
• EMERGENCY RESPONSE TELEPHONE NUMBER
• CERTIFICATION
• COMPATIBILITY
• BLOCKING AND BRACING
• PLACARDING
• SECURITY PLAN
• INCIDENT REPORTING

HM Carrier Responsibilities include:
• SHIPPING PAPER
• PLACARD AND MARK VEHICLE
• LOADING AND UNLOADING
• COMPATIBILITY
• BLOCKING AND BRACING
• INCIDENT REPORTING
• SECURITY PLAN
• EMPLOYEE TRAINING
Carrier and shipper responsibilities frequently overlap. When a motor carrier performs a shipper function, the carrier is responsible for performing that function in accordance with 49 CFR.
While this overview highlights some of the industry’s best shipping practices, see our next issue for details on shipping the most hazardous of commonly sold recycled parts.

 

INFOTRAC EMERGENCY HOTLINE
Infotrac, a preferred vendor in the ARA Member Benefit program, operates a sophisticated, state-of-the-art 24/7 hotline which protects more than 16,000 businesses and annually manages over 15,000 hazardous materials transportation incidents nationwide. This exclusive Infotrac ARA Member program allows you to receive an Emergency Response Hot-line and save hundreds of dollars for it. ARA Members can enroll at a discounted rate of $75 a year.

Since 1989, the federal government has mandated that any company shipping to or within the United States must have emergency-response procedures, including providing a 24-hour emergency response hotline telephone number operated by someone knowledgeable in hazmat shipping and skilled in emergency response and incident mitigation.

Emergency Response Service: Infotrac’s Command Center Hotline fulfills that mandate for automotive recyclers. Their 24/7/365 Command Center responders have access to a nationwide network of databases, experts, and agencies, including poison control facilities, hospitals, chemists, chemical engineers and environmental specialists. They provide extensive training/education to their team to recognize the complex steps that must be taken in a variety of emergencies in order to successfully manage any specific incident and to mitigate losses.

All Command Center calls and response information are recorded and logged and can be reviewed by a customer, if needed. The customer is notified of the incident and written reports are prepared, describing the incident and steps taken. Infotrac will also assist with or provide the proper U.S. DOT incident reports, NRC notifications or any other reporting requirements that are requested. Furthermore, they can assist with any remediation aid or waste disposal recommendations.
Enroll at https://ara.savings4members.com to receive discounted preferred vendor rate.

 

Resources:
A handy guide to classification categories can be found at
https://www.fmcsa.dot.gov/sites/fmcsa.dot.gov/files/docs/Nine_Classes_of_Hazardous_Materials-4-2013.pdf.

For information on placards, visit https://www.fmcsa.dot.gov/sites/fmcsa.dot.gov/files/docs/
Hazardous_Materials_Markings_Labeling_and_Placarding_Guide_508CLN.pdf
For more information call the Hazardous Materials regulations, visit the web site at https://www.fmcsa.dot.gov/regulations/hazardous-materials/hazardous-materialsdangerous-goods-regulations.