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Find answers to common freight questions.

What is Hazmat?

HAZMAT is short for Hazardous Material and is any substance that can be a risk to human health or the environment. Most hazardous materials are regulated by the federal and state governments and require special handling.

Different Everyday Hazmat Materials

There are many items that the FMCSA considers hazmat. Here is a list of hazmat items that require proper shipping:

  • Aerosol sprays (e.g., household cleaners, disinfectants, hairspray, spray paint)
  • Airbags and airbag inflators
  • Alcohols (e.g., rubbing alcohol, high-proof spirits)
  • Ammunition and gun powders
  • Bleaches
  • Camping equipment (e.g., camping stove, kerosene lanterns)
  • Car batteries
  • Carbon dioxide canisters and cylinders
  • Consumer electronics with lithium batteries (e.g., cell phones, laptops)
  • Dry ice
  • Essential oils (flammable)
  • Fertilizer compounds and ammonium nitrate fertilizers
  • Fire extinguishers
  • Fireworks – consumer and novelty
  • Fragrances (e.g., perfumes and colognes)
  • Fuels (e.g., gasoline, diesel fuel, propane, kerosene)
  • Fuel-powered Equipment (containing fuel)
  • Hand sanitizer
  • Inks (flammable)
  • Insecticides and pest control products
  • Lighters and matches
  • Lithium batteries, including portable chargers and power banks
  • Mercury and articles that contain mercury
  • Nail polish and nail polish remover
  • Oxygen tanks (medical and recreational)
  • Paints
  • Paint thinners and removers
  • Refrigerant gases (e.g., liquid nitrogen or carbon dioxide)
  • Scuba tanks
  • Smoke detectors
  • Swimming pool chemicals
  • Wood treatment products (e.g., sealants, stains, varnishes)

How Do You Transport Hazmat?

Gasoline, diesel, and home heating fuel are the most common hazardous cargoes, making tanker trucks the most common method to move HAZMAT. Tankers provide safety features such as fire extinguishers and spill control systems. These vehicles are able to handle temperature shifts and possible onboard spills. Some cargo must be in a cool, dry area and avoid contact with extreme weather changes.

Some hazmat is can be transported by reefer trailer. Reefer trailers are under temperature control, keeping items in a cool environment. This prevents the possible combustion of hazmat. A safer and cheaper route other than a truck is to use rail (train) transportation. Another way many choose to ship hazmat is by boat. This mode may take a while for the shipment to come in but is the least in cost.

Team Cleanup

The EPA (Environmental Protection Agency) conducts cleanup actions at sites where oil or chemicals have been released into the environment. Cleanups take place at active and abandoned waste sites, federal facilities, and where any hazmat storage units have leaked. While hazardous accidents are rare, they may not end well.

Identifying Hazard Labels

Caution labels are required by law to be on each container of hazardous materials. During processing, hazmat labels notify handlers throughout the delivery of the danger level of what is in the container. Hazardous materials can range from crates of rubbing alcohol to cans of gas. Although such materials may be harmful to human health.

Classes of Hazmat Freight

Dangerous shipments list under 9 hazmat freight classes.

  1. Explosives that have a blast hazard.
  2. Gasses that can be toxic or flammable
  3. Solids able to set fire
  4. Corrosive, poisonous liquids
  5. Explosive cargo if exposed to oxygen.
  6. Infectious poisons
  7. Radioactive materials that give off radiation.
  8. Corrosive materials.
  9. Miscellaneous hazardous materials.
hazmat labels

Haul Information

Hazardous truckloads require shipment information for pickup, processing, and delivery. For the safety of each handler, it is crucial to have the correct class and shipment information

  • Shipping name
  • NMFC number
  • UN number
  • Quantity
  • Packing group
  • Contact information of the shipper and receiver
  • Shipper’s certification

Label the cargo correctly in both words and pictures. Provide clear instructions for handling the freight, both on the label and in a document.

Get a Shipping Quote

FreightCenter will connect you to the best carrier to provide for the safety of all. Our carriers take special actions to guarantee that dicy deliveries are not a danger to the public.

Safety Guidelines

Proper packaging and labels avoid accidents for both the item and the handler. These packages are made to not react with the item inside avoiding the chance of a disaster. Making the container able to withstand its journey while shipped. Due to the terrain, the truck can undergo possible impact. As well as severe temperature changes that can react with the cargo.

Hazmat Certified

To be hazmat certified, classification requires fingerprints, a background check, and an educational course passed to be awarded a hazmat certification on their (CDL) commercial driver’s license. Although, the common hazmat certification 49 CFR 172 costs vary per state. Laws will change due to the danger class level of the freight and the National Motor Freight Classification (NMFC) number.

An NMFC number takes into consideration the fact of the freight being hazmat as well as what the class is for proper shipping. To summarize for you, each package that ships fall under an NMFC class or subclass and is a must-have for shipping. You can find your NMFC number through FreightCenter’s lookup tool for the best shipping.

Hazmat Trouble

If ever in contact with hazmat follow these steps.

  • Act quickly if you have been exposed to hazardous chemicals.
  • Follow cleaning instructions from local authorities.
  • Seek medical treatment for unusual symptoms as soon as possible.
  • Exposed clothing gets washed right away.

Hazmat: Always On The Go

Presently, hazardous materials ARE constantly shipping which keeps our economy in motion. While hazardous material can be harmful, we also use it for fule or on cancer patients as chemotherapy

Ship With Us!

Are you having trouble finding the right trailer or have any questions? Let FreightCenter help! We are experts when it comes to shipping products both nationally and internationally. Our carriers and freight agents can ease you into the process to ensure it’s a smooth ride for both you and your shipment. Use FreightCenter’s free online quote tool to begin. For other locations, call our shipping experts at 844-2127447. Saving money doesn’t have to cost more in the long haul: Let FreightCenter be your “one-stop ship.”

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