60 second law update: dangerous goods and hazchem transport

Ashleigh Wight
February 21, 2017


On 1 January 2017 the updated European Agreement concerning the International Carriage of Dangerous Goods by Road, known as ADR, came into force.

The rules are updated every two years alongside similar agreements covering how dangerous goods are moved by rail and water.

The rules are written into domestic law through The Carriage of Dangerous Goods and Use of Transportable Pressure Equipment Regulations 2009 (CGD 2009).

There have been several changes to ADR since the previous revision in 2015.

The most significant are:

  • revisions to allow the use of gaseous fuels (such as LNG, 
CNG or LPG) in vehicles carrying dangerous goods
  • the introduction of the requirement for consignors of dangerous goods to employ a dangerous goods safety adviser (DGSA) from 2019
  • the introduction of rules on the carriage of lithium batteries, especially damaged units
  • the introduction of UN numbers, which are used to identify hazardous materials
  • the carrier must provide the vehicle crew with the instructions in writing

Operators involved in the transport of materials covered by the ADR should check that they still meet the requirements with their DGSA, which all companies involved in the transport, packing, loading and unloading of hazardous materials are required to have.

According to the Health and Safety Executive, those exempt from the DGSA requirement include operators that transport only small loads of certain substances and those whose main role is not the carriage of dangerous goods.

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