The EU has passed an emergency measure that prevents any crate, pallet and /or packaging containing soft wood (ie: pine, spruce, fir) from entering any member country effective 01 October, 2001. If the wood packing is not properly marked by an authorized American Lumber Standards Committee (ALSC) agent prior to departure, the packing and its contents are subject to off-loading, delay and additional costs. Buying stamped lumber is not enough the shipper is required to have an ALSC stamp with the unique number assigned to each shipment indicating that the wood has been subjected to specific heat, pressure or fumigation treatments.
Drum It Up! Steel Drum Industry News, Trends, and Issues
Archive for 2001
Recently, the Federal Appeals Court threw out 8 of the 9 convictions, and most of the $11 Million penalty against a now defunct jet-repair company. As you might recall, canisters that were not empty and not properly stored were placed onto a Valuejet plane in Miami. Moments after take-off, the plane exploded as a result of the improper shipping of the canisters, killing 110 people. Federal law states that the jet-repair company could be convicted only if its employees knew that the canisters were dangerous. The Appeals Court did uphold the company‘s conviction and $2 Million fine for willfully failing to train employees according to the Federal Hazardous Materials Regulations.
UN testing criteria for drop tests state that "where more then one orientation is possible for a given drop test, the orientation most likely to result in failure of the packaging must be used." As with all performance oriented tests, it is the responsibility of the manufacturer to establish the orientation believed to be weakest. To this end, two orientations of drop were believed to be the weakest points. Dropping at either of these two points has served the steel drum well as drum failures are more the result of human failure than structural failure. However, members of the steel drum community have proceeded to find which one is the most severe drop point. The two choices are with the ring gap facing the contact surface (6 O‘clock) or the ring gap about 30 degrees off center (4 O’clock or 8 O‘clock). With no field incidents demonstrating the need to identify either drop orientation, some believe that the drum manufacturing and testing community is focusing too heavily on non-issues, and delaying their responsiveness to critical issues that can be identified in the field. Insure that your shipments will have a lower amount of failure risk by making sure that the drum integrity (steel thickness, ring style, gasket) are of sufficient strength to pass the rigors of domestic and international transit. Just passing a drop test will not aid in passing the #1 reason for drum failure……..fork lift puncture!
New Cargo Rules for Passenger Carrying Aircraft are being implemented as a result of the terrorist incidents that occurred last month. Shippers using freight forwarders that move freight on passenger carrying aircraft or that deal directly with these airlines will be subject to new security requirements. Some of the new procedures include; carriers (passenger) subject to the security directive may only accept cargo from a verified shipper that was a known shipper prior to September 1, 1999, with an active account showing 24 shipments since September 1, 1999, or a known shipper that has been audited by the air carrier since October 1, 2001 and that freight from unknown shippers cannot be accepted under any circumstances. More restrictions also apply but although a directive has not yet been formally issued, it has been reported that all passenger carriers have indicated that they will apply the directive‘s criteria immediately.
The definition of a "known shipper" is a person or entity for which a carrier or indirect carrier has reliable information indicating; 1) a customer record that contains the shipper‘s name/phone number, and established/verifiable business payment or credit history. 2) Either an established shipping contract executed at least seven days prior to the shipment which covers a series of shipments and is signed by both parties, or an established business history containing a previous documented business relationship between the carrier or indirect carrier and the shipper of not less than six months prior to the shipment tendered, or at least three shipments tendered by the shipper to the carrier or indirect carrier on at least three nonconsecutive days.
As I try to conduct my days in a ‘business as usual’ format, I know that the plan of my future business and personal life has changed. There is no choice, so I must redesign my life to continue ‘doing my job’ to serve my business and civic responsibilities as well as my family needs. At a recent dinner honoring Chief John Eversole of the Chicago Fire Department, I was moved by the powerful energy and spirit that lives within the brotherhood of fire fighters. Beginning their work in the face of one‘s disaster, they insist that they are ’doing their jobs‘ to help individuals move forward in life. The firefighters in New York were ’doing their job‘ to help us move forward with our lives, and in honor to those lost, we must continue to move forward so that we too can ’do our jobs‘ and face the unexpected hurtles of life.