For many years, the US Department of Transportation has been randomly testing hazardous materials (dangerous goods) packagings at their Package Testing Lab in Tobyhanna, Pennsylvania. Designed and manufactured to meet the performance testing criteria of the DOT and the United Nations, Tobyhanna replicates the test parameters that are indicated by the markings on hazardous materials packagings. The tests include drop height, hydrostatic pressure and stacking. DOT randomly selects packagings and buys them from resellers or end users, prior to usage. In 2003, DOT focused on two Skolnik Salvage Drum products, purchased several of these drums from our customers, and subjected each drum to the UN Performance criteria. Just 3 weeks ago, we received notification from the DOT that all the drums performed in compliance with their markings. Just another reason why all our drums are made thicker, heavier and stronger then industry standards.
Drum It Up! Steel Drum Industry News, Trends, and Issues
Archive for 2003
Field officials with the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration will visit most of the nation‘s hazardous material carriers in the coming months. Their mission is to increase the level of awareness of hazardous material carriers to terrorist threats. These visits will not result in a compliance review or enforcement action. The information being provided by the field staff will be in the form of recommendations and suggestions, except those regulatory requirements affecting the actual movement of hazardous materials. The main highlights of the Security Talking Points are: General Security, Personnel Security, Hazardous Materials and Package Controls, En Route Security, Technical Innovations, Management Initiatives and Communications. These recommendations may not apply to all carriers, based on their size and scope of operation. Additionally, this list will be changed based on future priorities to address terrorist threats.
Early next year, the Department of Homeland Security (DHS) will unveil a program for smart container seals that guarantee shipments have not been tampered with after inspection at foreign ports. The smart-seal program is part of the effort to ensure that no bombs or hazardous materials find their way into about seven million containers arriving at U.S. ports each year. Speaking at the recent E-Gov Homeland Security Conference in Washington, Jayson P. Ahern, Assistant Commissioner of Field Operations for the Customs and Border Protection Bureau, said a number of vendors are now testing smart-seal technologies. The quest for a "smart box" is part of the service‘s policy of pushing the nation’s first line of defense farther away from U.S. borders.
Recently introduced as an alternative to conventional bolt ring closures, Skolnik customers find that not having to whack drums before closing is a monumental improvement to the final drum closure process. The patented Quick-Lever design is the first toggle-style ring to ever be used successfully for UN certified Open Head drums and the ’T’ Salvage Drums. In addition to the performance integrity, one customer reports that they have reduced the drum closure process from 6 minutes to less then 30 seconds and that due to the severe labor savings and the minimal ring cost, their overall profit margin has improved. Call or email us if you are ready to "Whack No More" and resolve your Drum closure process.
Recent revision of Closure Instructions for all UN packagings further emphasizes the information that must be given by packaging manufacturers and distributors (Docket #HM-215E). For steel drums (CFR 178.2(c), the ‘art’ of closing a steel drum must be translated into a technical procedural instruction. The DOT has now stated that Closure Instructions are to include the types and dimensions of closures, including gaskets, needed to ensure (note emphasis) that the packaging is capable of passing the applicable performance tests. The instructions must also include any procedures to be followed, for inner packagings, to effectively assemble and close the package to prevent leakage in transportation. Verify that you have current SKOLNIK Closure Instructions for your SKOLNIK containers at: www.skolnik.com/pages/closure.html.
When buying a UN specification drum, the entire design of the drum and all its components (heads, ring, gasket, bolt, nut, plugs) is defined by the test samples. With all of these elements being incorporated into a drum type that must meet a test standard, users cannot alter or exchange any of these components as it might impact the ability for the drum to perform as certified. If a filler changes the ring from a nut and bolt style to a LeverLock, or even changes the gasket, this would void the UN certification. If replacement parts are needed, fillers must make sure that they get original parts from the manufacturer that meet the test criteria of that specific drum. Once a drum is filled, compliance with the UN certification is the responsibility of the shipper.