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Industrial Packaging for Critical Contents

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

Archive for 2019

7A Drums: Packaging Requirements

August 20th, 2019 by Natalie Mueller

Filed under: Industry News

At Skolnik we take great pride in ensuring that all of our products are up to code. From the materials we use to the tests we perform, we always make sure that when used properly, our storage devices are always safe and reliable in all ways required. It is very important though, that everyone utilizing our products are also well versed in government regulations, especially when it comes to storage and transportation of dangerous materials. A regulation that doesn’t get enough attention, but is very important, is that of Permissible Radioactive Materials. We craft the appropriate container for these materials: a 7A Type A Drum. 

And, as with all of our products, we manufacture it stronger and more durable than standards require. We put our 7A drums through rigorous testing procedures to ensure durability in all kinds of situations, from drop tests, to penetration, and stacking tests. However, because it is the shipper who is liable for noncompliant packaging, it is important to use these drums properly. Here are some quick reminders for proper usage of 7A Type A Drums.

The obvious first point is that there should be “no identifiable release of hazardous materials to the environment.” This is of course the most important rule, and all other rules and standards are built around ensuring this one remains unbroken. 

Secondly, you may not alter the packaging in any way that would cause the effectiveness to be substantially reduced. Tampering with the ready made drums is a good way to make sure they do not work to their full potential, so it’s always best to just use them as manufactured and intended.

Other very important rules include the following; make sure all packaging is properly closed, that, when applicable, there is appropriate ventilation, maintain proper air pressure where materials are stored, and of course keep packaging away from sharp materials.

We always make sure our products are up to code, and we know there are a lot of rules but they are there for a reason. We trust all of you to properly observe all regulations when it comes to utilizing special products like the 7A Type A Drums.

Ups and Downs of 55 Gallon Drums

August 6th, 2019 by Natalie Mueller

Filed under: Industry News

At Skolnik, we keep a keen eye on the packing industry. We always want to know how certain products and solutions are performing over the years, as it can greatly affect our own business, but also the business of our customers. Studying these trends we can learn more customer’s growing and evolving needs and how we can better support them. In particular, we like to keep an eye on the industry trends regarding the longstanding, most popular industrial container, the 55 Gallon Barrel.

The Reusable Industrial Packaging Association conducts regular surveys of industry trends and statistics. One item of interest for both RIPA and Skolnik, is the production and reconditioning of 55 Gallon Barrels. Since the early nineties, production and reconditioning of 55 gallon steel barrels in the United States has slowly decreased over time. Whereas the production and reconditioning of plastic barrels in a similar time-span has seen a net increase in production. In addition, when looking at steel barrels, you can see that more are reconditioned than newly produced, and, once again, the plastic barrels are in the complete opposite  situation, seeing more new production than reconditioning.

We will always be making our 55 Gallon Drums, they are one of our most popular items and incredibly versatile. Although the study does not offer any guesses as to the causes behind these trends, we can make a few. Namely that steel drums, especially Skolnik steel drums are manufactured thicker, heavier and stronger than standard plastic drums. Furthermore, steel is more easily sanitized and reconditioned than plastic. No matter what the trends say, we will always make our 55 gallon drums, they are an incredibly versatile and popular sized product. 

It is still interesting to see these very clear trends and preferences in the market. One might expect the production of something like 55 Gallon Barrels to be a consistent number, but to see that there are actual ups and downs gives us valuable insight into our customers needs.  No matter the need though, Skolnik is here to produce high quality 55 gallon barrels you can trust.

Easy HazMat Training Options to Remain Compliant

July 30th, 2019 by Howard Skolnik

Filed under: HazMat, Safety, Skolnik Newsletter

More than ever before, improper or non-existent training is being viewed as the major cause of many dangerous goods incidents happening today in the US and abroad. A large percentage of the DOT‘s enforcement actions pertain to the failure of employers to provide appropriate hazardous materials training. In most cases, violations are the result of no function-specific training, or no recurrent training which is required every 3 years. We recommend that employers use outside consultants to establish and monitor the efficacy of a training program. An outside consultant can choose appropriate testing requirements, administer testing and track ongoing compliance. This includes training for new employees as well as re-training for employees that receive additional responsibilities.

While many training programs are available, Labelmaster offers face to face, classroom programs that are recognized as being of particularly high quality. Check here to learn more about these options.

For on-line training, Labelmaster also offers 9 critical courses that are essential for dangerous goods shippers and employers. These classes (https://www.labelmaster.com/shop/training) are easy to administer, can be attended from anywhere in the world, and are available 24/7.

Whether face to face or electronically, there is no reason for HazMat employers to overlook their training responsibilities.

Quick and Effective Use of Salvage Drums

July 29th, 2019 by Natalie Mueller

Filed under: Industry News

When it comes to a potential spill or hazmat clean-up situation, time is of the essence. Prevention is always the primary goal, but if an issue occurs, facilities need to be trained and prepared to respond swiftly. The following is an example of a situation in which a facility utilized a salvage drum to efficiently solve a problem.  It also demonstrates a great use case for salvage drums such as ours, as those who were on the scene quickly handled a dangerous chemical situation. We love to see stories like this where those present reacted quickly and appropriately.

Earlier this year in the town of High Point, North Carolina there was a report of a potential hazmat issue. At the local bus production plant, employees noticed a chemical storage barrel that seemed to be bulging outward and called the fire department. When the fire department arrived on the scene, they discerned that the 55 gallon drum contained a foreign element in addition to the specific chemical it was meant to contain.This foreign material was causing a chemical reaction, resulting in the expansion of the barrel and a leak. After identifying the chemical they were dealing with, the fire department responded by placing the original drum into a salvage drum. Once the spill was cleaned and the compromised drum was removed, the ‘all clear’ was given. Thankfully no injuries were reported.

Events like this can always be prevented with proper safe handling techniques, but mistakes do happen. Spill cleanup is just as important as prevention, a quick response with the right equipment can save untold amounts of time and money, and prevent serious injuries. We’re proud of those at the scene and the responders for all taking the necessary steps to clean everything up. Salvage drums are a vital tool for any business that handles dangerous chemicals, and can be easily used to handle situations like this effectively and safely. Remember that only salvage drums, not overpack drums, are certified to contain a leaking or otherwise damaged package. Utilizing an overpack drum to house a compromised drum would not be DOT compliant.