Drum It Up! Steel Drum Industry News, Trends, and Issues

Archive for 2005

PHSMA Clarifies Training Requirements For Offeror

August 9th, 2005 by Howard Skolnik

Filed under: DOT/UN, HazMat, Industry News

With further regards to haz-mat employee training requirements, the Pipeline and Hazardous Materials Safety Administration (PHMSA) issued a Final Rule (July 2005) on the Applicability of the haz-mat Regulations to a "person who offers" a hazardous material for transportation in commerce. Adding to 49CFR 171.8, a "person who offers or offeror" means any person who does either or both of the following: performs, or is responsible for performing any pre-transportation function required for transportation of haz-mats in commerce; tenders or makes haz-mats available to a carrier for transport in commerce. PSMSA even noted that a "data entry person" who prepares a carrier master bill is a haz-mat employee, though the shipment and documentation is checked by another trained person. In this case, he or she must be trained and tested pursuant to 49CFR 172.704. DOT field agents are currently reviewing company compliance to haz-mat employee training, and non-compliance penalties are being issued.

National Trucker Shortage Delays Shipments

August 9th, 2005 by Howard Skolnik

Filed under: HazMat

Your order could be ready to ship on time but the delivery is likely to be late. According to the American Trucking Association, there is a national shortage of long-haul drivers in the US. Of the 3.4 million truck drivers on the road, 1.3 million are long-haul drivers. Reasons for the shortage vary and a portion of this reduction is due to the new requirements for drivers of hazardous materials. It‘s all part of procedures mandated in the Patriot Act, enacted after the 9/11 attacks on the United States. Effective last January 31, 2005, new drivers applying for haz-mat endorsements ("H" or "X") on their Commercial Driver Licenses (CDL’s) have to pass a fingerprint-based criminal background check before they can be authorized to haul hazardous materials. In late March 2005, existing CDL haz-mat certified drivers began receiving notices that they were required to renew their CDL by re-taking the written test and passing a fingerprint-based background check. In fact, all CDL holders—whether or not they held haz-mat endorsements—were required to renew their licenses. As this current scenario is expected to get worse, we suggest that you plan your purchasing with generous lead times.

Do You Know How Many Americans Have Walked On The Moon?

August 9th, 2005 by Howard Skolnik

Filed under: Cool Stuff

Our attention last month was focused on the Space Shuttle Discovery and I was remembering the thrill of watching Neil Armstrong walk on the moon for the first time in 1969. Now, I am observing that these amazing missions have become almost routine, and few know the current tally of Americans that have walked on the moon. Do you? Six different Apollo missions gathered moon samples, beginning with Apollo 11, which landed on the moon July 20, 1969, and ended with Apollo 17 in 1974. All but Apollo 13 successfully landed on the moon and were able to collect and bring back lunar samples. Of the six missions, there were 12 astronauts that have walked on the moon. Let me know if you knew the right answer!

Credit Card Fraud Protection When Ordering

July 5th, 2005 by Bill Fitzgerald

Filed under: Industry News

Industrial credit card sales have soared at Skolnik over the last 5 years. As one of the first package manufacturing companies to accept credit card sales in the late 1980‘s, the number of customers using credit cards remained small until about 5 years ago. No doubt connected to the spiked growth of on-line Internet sales, credit card sales have also grown at Skolnik. We all know that credit card fraud is increasing and in order to protect our customers and better understand the issues relative to the information gathering procedure, our sales staff has undergone training for safe credit card transactions. Depending on the credit card company, the type of membership and the value of the order, different information may be requested to complete the sale. Furthermore, credit card information for each sale is unique and, by law, is NOT kept on file. Therefore, if you have to repeat this information when re-ordering, this is part of our procedure to prevent fraudulent use of this information.

Undeclared Hazardous Materials And Incident Reporting

July 5th, 2005 by Howard Skolnik

Filed under: DOT/UN, HazMat

The US DOT is in the process of re-writing the Hazardous Materials Incident Report, DOT Form F 5800.1. If a hazardous material incident occurs while a package is in transport (CFR 49, 171.16(a)), then it is required that the incident must be logged using the DOT F 5800.1 as stipulated. One outcome of recording this information is that it gives DOT the ability to determine if the current performance test requirements on packagings are responsive to the rigors of in-field transport. In fact, most shippers underestimate or have little knowledge about the significant forces to which packages are exposed to in air, sea, road and rail transport. If not already familiar, you can learn more about the Incident Reporting Procedure at hazmat.dot.gov.

Haz-mat Training For Consumer Quantity Packaging?

July 5th, 2005 by Howard Skolnik

Filed under: DOT/UN, HazMat

According to CFR 49, 171.8, hazardous materials training is required for a person who is employed by a hazardous materials employer and who, in the course of employment, directly affects hazardous materials transportation safety. Recent questions have been submitted to DOT regarding the training requirements for private citizens shipping hazardous materials (ie: items returned to a manufacturer by consumers) and professionals (ie: doctors, veterinarians and pharmacists) shipping hazardous materials. DOT has stated that for the private citizen, no formal training is required but they must comply with all the applicable haz-mat requirements when offering such for transportation in commerce. Professionals DO require the formal haz-mat training. non-compliance with the training requirement can result in penalty violations.