How To Ship Hazardous Material Safely and Without Worry

Jul 13, 2022 Helen Spade Helen Spade

Different transportation methods are needed for different sorts of goods. For instance, non-perishable items like clothing, toys, and home décor may be readily packaged and delivered by air or sea without concern for the cargo's handling. 

Hazmat shipping by land or other means is on the far right end of the ease-of-care spectrum, with garment shipping at the extreme left end of the cargo-sensitivity spectrum. To guarantee its safe shipment, you must take great care. 

What Are Hazardous Goods?

Gases, liquids, and solids may all be dangerous things. They can be hot, cold, odorless, translucent, or colorful. They might be manufactured goods, pure chemicals, combinations of substances, or standalone items. Hazardous commodities are classed and labeled according to the danger they pose. 

How To Ship Hazmat Without Worry

Shipping different hazardous commodities worldwide may be challenging since many classifications, sub-classes, and divisions exist. Below, we'll look into how to ship Hazmat and dangerous goods safely.

Understand Your Hazmat Goods

You need to know and comprehend the nature of the commodities you are handling, the inherent hazards it carries, and the laws governing their transportation if you are a shipper or carrier of hazardous chemicals. The shipper must know each detail about these hazardous products, and you must show these facts using documentation, labels, etc.

Follow the Rules and Regulations

Whether a shipper or a carrier, you must know the restrictions that apply to each form of transportation. Transporting hazardous chemicals is subject to several limitations, rules, and procedures, all of which differ significantly from nation to nation and even from state to state within the same nation.

The Worldwide Maritime Dangerous Goods Code (IMDG Code) governs the safe transportation of dangerous goods and hazardous materials by sea. The Code of Federal Regulations 49 governs the movement of dangerous goods via road. The International Air Transport Association (IATA) covers the transport of dangerous goods by air. Dangerous Goods Regulations (DGR) is the trusted source for documenting dangerous shipments.

Follow Packaging Protocols and Procedures

While good packing is necessary for any cargo to prevent damage, it carries an added risk for hazardous cargo. To prevent movement, leakage, or damage to your cargo, you must properly pack it using the right materials, padding, and strapping.

For shipment, everything must be well packed, braced, and fastened.

In general, dangerous commodities should be stored in quick and simple locations to reach in case of a crisis.

Ensure Correct Documentation

The paperwork about hazardous material shipments is perhaps the most important factor that must be considered in the chain of hazardous material shipments. Depending on the nature of the items, the nation of shipping and reception, and the mode of transportation, the shipment of hazardous commodities may entail the following documents:

  • MSDS
  • DG Packing 
  • DG Request
  • DG Manifest
  • List/Declaration
  • TREM Card

There are various classes, and each has different handling requirements, segregation techniques, and hazard types. These facts can only be communicated through appropriate documentation to those in charge of transport movements.


Everyone in the transportation chain, including packers, cargo handlers, equipment operators, truck drivers, approvers, and documentation employees, must have the proper training for both their jobs and the entire chain. Each employee should be familiar with the rules governing the cargo, the rules at the ports, the country of destination, and the procedures and paperwork needed for the transfer.


As you can see from the information above, the transportation of hazardous items is extremely specialized, and many factors need to be considered. Each link in the chain must be fully informed of the hazardous items being delivered, the paperwork needed to support them, the labeling and transportation standards, and the laws that must be adhered to.

You must observe strict guidelines, and extensive planning is necessary. It's always preferable to use a logistics services provider or a hazardous products specialist familiar with the processes, packing, labeling, specifications, and paperwork needed for transporting your dangerous items.

If you need support transporting hazardous materials, the SeaRates team can assist you. Please contact us for more information.

Entrepreneur Helen Spade is usually found assisting organizations in their technical business approaches. She is an editor at PHDKingdom and AcademicBrits, and a regular contributor to Originwritings.