Safe Transport of Dangerous Goods

South Africa is well known for a rich history in mining and the export of mineral resources.
With the 10th largest road network in the world and a heavy reliance on road freight transport, it is to be expected that motorists often share the roads with the transporters of dangerous goods.

Are we aware of the risks presented by the transport of dangerous goods and what can we expect from the operators in this industry?
Do we know how to share the roads with dangerous goods vehicles and how to react when arriving at the scene of a road crash of a dangerous goods vehicle?
To answer these questions and to gain further insights into the transport of dangerous goods we approached some of the experts in the industry.

What are the most important pieces of Legislation governing the transport of Dangerous Goods/ Hazardous Goods?
The National Road Traffic Act, 93 of 1996 (NRTA) and the SANS specifications referred to in the NRT Regulations – reg 273A.
Up until around August 2000 the responsibility of the transportation and handling of Dangerous Goods was with the Department of Health under Hazardous Chemicals Regulation of the Occupational Health and Safety Act and regulations as prescribed within the Hazardous Substance Act (15 of 1973). This system was difficult to police and enforce as the regulations were fragmented, encompassing several different legislations and included the Hazardous Substance Act, Explosive Act, Mining Act, Fire Brigade Services Act and the Farm Feeds Agricultural and Stock Remedies Act (36 of 1947).
The regulations had specific limitations and only affected substances transported by road tanker in quantities in excess of 500 litres. This responsibility has now been transferred to the Department of Transport and was implemented in stages between August 2000 and October 2001 and replaced by new legislation prescribed within the National Road Traffic (93 of 1996) and a wide selection of the South African National Standards (SANS) codes of practice (formerly known as SABS or South African Bureau of Standards).

By Arrive Alive

Photo by from Pexels

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