Once a shipment is considered a hazardous material, companies are often perplexed about how to comply with the hazardous materials regulations (CFR 49). Shipment of a hazardous material can include proper classification of the contents, proper selection of packaging, verification of closure procedures, documentation, emergency notification, and more. In some companies, entire departments are devoted to the safe and compliant transport of hazardous materials while in some companies, researching this process can fall into the hands of a novice. In order to help facilitate the information research process, the DOT (Department of Transportation) has established the DOT INFO LINE. You can reach the Info Line by calling 1-800-467-4922 (1-800-HMR49-22) from 9am to 5pm, Eastern Standard Time. The Info Line is staffed with knowledgeable hazmat professionals that are capable of helping each caller to understand the requirements for hazmat transport compliance, interpret the intent of specific paragraphs and access previous interpretations of the DOT and other regulatory agencies. This service is free and is a good place to call whenever you have a hazmat question.
STEEL DRUM INDUSTRY NEWS, TRENDS AND ISSUES
Archive for May, 2008
Once again, prices are soaring. Whether it’s fuel for our cars, gas for our bake ovens or resins for our paints, we’re seeing substantial increases on just about all our manufacturing expenses, especially steel. Unlike some manufacturers that send out blanket price increases, we prefer to consider appropriate increases on an individual basis. Therefore, plan to hear that your next order is going to reflect some type of price adjustment. However, the real menace, as we look ahead to summer, is going to be the short supply of available steel. Several significant US steel mills will be closed this year for maintenance and the imported steel capacities are low. Combine these and we project that carbon and stainless are going to become “precious metals” for the rest of 2008. In order to plan for such shortages, Skolnik places long-term blanket orders that secure our steel supply for 6-12 months. We believe we have covered our bases for material continuity, however, even with these blanket orders, prices will fluctuate. I’ll do my best to make sure our customer orders are uninterrupted!
Since introducing our stainless steel wine barrels about 10 years ago, we’ve seen the winemakers take a 180-degree turn on using stainless aging containers. In fact, several winemakers now boast about the benefits of aging in stainless steel. At the Callaway Vineyard in Temecula, California, they offer 100% stainless aging of their 2006 Special Selection Pinot Gris, 2006 Special Selection Viognier, and the 2006 Special Selection Muscat Canelli. In the Marche region of Italy, where winemaking dates back more than 10,000 years, stainless is now prevalent. Verdicchio, one of Italy’s most age-worthy white wines, is aged in stainless steel in Belisario, Montecappone, Badiali and Vicari. While there will always be winemakers that prefer to age in oak, we embrace those progressive companies that refuse to stay in the “oak-closet” and are living the benefits of stainless steel aging.