CellBlockEX Bag Only
CellBlockEX- Not Your Average Cushioning

CellBlockEX Logo Fire, heat, smoke suppresant

A few weeks back, Clifton Brown wrote a blog on how to ship damaged and defective batteries. Clifton mentions the importance of using the best quality packaging that will mitigate harmful consequences when shipping damaged/defective lithium batteries and help reduce the risk of transportation related hazardous or regulatory non-compliance incidents.

Perfect for Shipping Damaged and Defective Batteries

If you do have a defective or damaged lithium battery to ship, in addition to verifying the correct packaging regulations you should be asking yourself one question, would my packaging contain the heat, fire, and smoke if the battery does in fact explode? Unlike most other cushioning/absorbents on the market, CellBlockEX has the ability to suppress smoke, fire, and heat in the event of a fire starting within outer packaging. CellBlockEX actually displaces oxygen, absorbs energy and ultimately suffocates fire inside an outer packaging (see video below)

Why CellBlockEX?

Because Damaged and Defective batteries are usually more at risk of thermal runaway due to uncontrolled releases of the battery’s chemically stored energy, CellBlockEX is the is the perfect solution. As it stands now as Clifton mentioned, the 49 CFR §173.185 (f) limits the type of outer packaging that can be used when shipping damaged batteries excluding fiberboard packaging, that is of course unless you have a special permit, stay tuned.

In the meantime like the video above depicts, CellBlockEx would be the perfect inner Continue Reading…

2018 Safe + Sound Week
2018 OSHA Safe + Sound Week

2018 Safe + Sound Week

OSHA Safe + Sound Week Set for August 2018

Back in the 14th century, sailing ships were a primary means of trading goods. To protect goods on these vessels they were insured against loss or damage. The best news for the insurance companies was to receive word that the ship had returned “safe and sound”. The word “safe” was an indication of all crew members were accounted for without injury. The word “sound” told the company the ship had not suffered any serious damage. Since then we continue to use the phrase in our daily life.

The week of August 13-19 has been designated as Nationwide Safe + Sound Week for 2018. The week is presented by the Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA), National Safety Council, American Industrial Hygiene Association (AIHA), and the National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health (NIOSH) just to name a few. The goal is to “raise awareness and understanding of the value of safety and health programs“. All business and companies are encouraged to participate because “safe workplaces are sound business“.

The Core Elements of Safe + Sound Week

The focus of the week is on three core elements. It covers management leadership, worker participation and find and fix hazards.

  • Management leadership is a demonstrated commitment at the highest levels of an organization to safety and health. It means that business owners, executives, managers, and supervisors make safety Continue Reading…
WHMIS Logo
Countdown to WHMIS 2015 Deadlines

WHMIS Update

Compliance Dates are Right Around the Corner

Are you truly ready? There is only a month left until the WHMIS 2015 deadline for Manufacturer’s and Importers to comply with the new requirements. Distributors have just a bit longer with a compliance date of August 31, 2018.

Phase Timing Suppliers Employer*
Manufacturers and Importers Distributors
Phase 1 From February 11, 2015 to May 31, 2018 WHMIS 1988 or WHMIS 2015 WHMIS 1988 or WHMIS 2015 Consult F/P/T regulator
Phase 2 From June 1, 2018 to August 31, 2018 WHMIS 2015 WHMIS 1988 or WHMIS 2015 WHMIS 1988 or WHMIS 2015
Phase 3 From September 1, 2018 to November 30, 2018 WHMIS 2015 WHMIS 2015 WHMIS 1988 or WHMIS 2015
Completion December 1, 2018 WHMIS 2015 WHMIS 2015 WHMIS 2015
* Consult appropriate FPT OHS regulator to confirm requirements and transition timing.

The Hazardous Products Regulations (HPR) were published in the Canada Gazette on February 11, 2015. This amendment aligned the HPR with the Globally Harmonized System of Classification and Labelling of Chemicals (GHS). The GHS system, which is being implemented around the world effects the classification, labeling, safety data sheets and worker education and training.

The HPR set out specific classification criteria. If a product meets the definition of a hazardous product, then the workplace is covered by the WHMIS regulations and a WHMIS program must be in place.

Hopefully by now, you are well under way to ensure compliance with the deadline. ICC Compliance Center’s checklist is a useful tool to make sure you have all of Continue Reading…

National Day of Mourning is April 28
National Day of Mourning to Commemorate Canadian Workers

National Day of Mourning is April 28 in Canada

National Day of Mourning is April 28th

On a winter’s day in February, 1891, my great-grandfather was working in a coal mine in Springhill, Nova Scotia, when in an instant his world changed. An explosion deep in the mine erupted, sending fire sweeping through the tunnels. About 125 of his friends and coworkers died that day. With the rest of the community, he helped carry out the dead from the shattered pits. The story passed down in my family how he found the worst was carrying out the bodies of the children, some as young as ten, who worked beside him in the mine.

How Did This Happen?

How did this disaster happen? The inquiry never reached a firm conclusion, but such incidents were common in those days, when mines filled with coal dust were time bombs waiting for a spark. One might think the mine operators would have learned, but two more high-fatality accidents happened in Springhill (1956 and 1958), before the mine was closed for good.

In some ways, we live in a lucky era. Most of us who go to work each day expect to return home alive and well. Historically, though, the workplace could be a deathtrap. Although even the earliest farming and gathering communities faced hazards, the Industrial Revolution brought more people into contact with dangerous working conditions than ever. Workers in factories could be Continue Reading…

Lithium Battery
Passengers Traveling with Lithium Batteries

Inside passenger airplane

Thinking About Lithium Batteries as a Passenger

Recently in my travels, I found myself stuck in a long security line at our local airport. Being that it was during Spring Break, there was a wide variety of travelers from college students to retirees looking to re-connect with family. Although there were people of all ages and travel experience they all seemed to have one thing in common, they were confused how to travel with their laptop computers and other types of portable electronics containing lithium batteries. Let’s discuss some general guidance on how to travel with specific portable electronics that contain lithium batteries referencing some recently issued documents by IATA.

Portable Electronic Devices (PED) Containing Batteries

close up of man holding cellphone in front of laptop

Portable Electronic Devices including electronics such as cameras, mobile phones, laptops, and tablets containing batteries carried by passengers for personal use should be carried in carry-on baggage.

For devices that can be packed in checked baggage:

  • The device must be protected from damage and to prevent unintentional activation;
  • The device must be completely turned off (not in sleep or hibernation mode). 

Spare lithium batteries

Lithium Battery

Each spare battery must be individually protected to prevent short circuits by placing them in the original retail packaging or by otherwise insulating terminals by taping over exposed terminals or simply placing each battery in a separate plastic bag or protective pouch and carried in carry-on baggage only. Items that contain Continue Reading…

TDG Methanol Classification
Big Change in Methanol Transport Classification (TDG)

TDG Update - Man Staring in to warehouse

New Transport Canada Update Means Big Changes for Many Companies

Recently, Transport Canada posted on their FAQ web page, a few questions regarding shipping mixtures of Methanol.

The first three FAQs are for the most part, not surprising, with one exception in Question 2. These FAQ’s appear as follows (these FAQ’s are directly from their website): (keep reading, the biggest surprise is coming).

Question: How do I classify a product that contains methanol as the only dangerous good?
Answer: As per Section 2.3 of the TDG Regulations, when the name of a dangerous good is shown in Schedule 1, that name and the corresponding data for that shipping name (class, subsidiary class(es), packing group (PG)) must be used. Therefore, when methanol is the only dangerous good in the product and it meets the criteria for Class 3, Flammable Liquids, it should be transported as UN1230, METHANOL, Class 3 (6.1), PG II. Note that PG II is the only packing group available for methanol as per Schedule 1 of the TDG Regulations. Note: Subparagraph 1.3(2)(d)(iv) of the TDG Regulations allows a person to indicate the word “SOLUTION” or “MIXTURE” and also the concentration of the solution or mixture after the shipping name, as applicable.
Question: Tests results for a solution containing methanol as the only dangerous good indicate that its packing group should be III. How do I choose the proper shipping name?
Answer: Even if a dilution would lead to a Continue Reading…
Regulatory Helpdesk: March 12

Combustible Liquids, Using Chemtrec’s Number, Keeping Up-To-Date, and Other Paperwork

Welcome back to the Regulatory Helpdesk where we answer your dangerous goods & hazmat questions. We’re here to help you become independent with – and understand the whys and hows – of the regulations.

DG Documentation on Overpacks

Q. If there are multiple skids of dangerous goods (overpacks) in a shipment on which one should the copies of the invoices and shipping papers be attached?
A. Neither the DOT nor IATA regulations tell you to put “paperwork” on the outer packages or overpacks. That is a carrier/driver thing. All the regulations care about is the proper marking and labeling that they require. You also have to be able to physically hand your paperwork to the carrier. Your best bet would be to talk to your carrier directly as to how they want it handled.

Combustible Liquids

Q. I have a liquid with a flashpoint of 100° F and it does not meet any other hazard classes. It is not an RQ, waste or marine pollutant. After manufacturing, it is placed in tubes and then shipped for sale in retail stores. What marks and labels are needed on the outside of the packages?
A. The flashpoint of this material is 100° F and there are no other hazards under the transport regulations. This means it technically meets the definition of a flammable liquid in Packing Group III per §173.120 Continue Reading…
TDG
March 2018 TDG TP 14877 Update

Railway Tanker Transporting Dangerous Goods

Rail TDG Standard TP 14877 Update

On March 15 Transport Canada released a notice on the intent to issue a new January 2018 edition of standard TP 14877 “Containers for Transport of Dangerous Goods by Rail” to replace the current 2013 (with Corrigendum) edition.

This is the penultimate culmination of the public process, in part arising out of the Lac Mégantic 2013 disaster, undertaken by a stakeholder Consultative Committee that began in February of 2016.

The main features of the proposed 2018 edition include:

  • Improved usability by incorporating external technical requirements, such as those in Protective Direction 34, 37 and 38.
  • Updated dangerous goods list to align with the 19th edition of the UN Model Regulations. Adjusted special provisions to reflect updated transportation requirements for Sulphuric Acid (UN1831) and Hydrogen Peroxide (UN2014 / UN2015).
  • Updated technical requirements for Class 3, Flammable Liquids and the new tank car specification known as TC 117.
  • Improved harmonization between tank car requirements in Canada and the US, including tank car approvals, tank car design requirements and a new mechanism to secure One Time Movement Approvals (OTMA) – Category 2.
  • Updated material of construction requirements for tank cars, including the addition of stainless steel, normalized steel for dangerous goods classified as a toxic inhalation hazard (TIH) and improved thickness requirements for new tank car construction.

Comparing the 2013 and 2018 Standard TP 14877

A brief comparison of the TABLE OF CONTENTS Continue Reading…

IATA
IATA Creates Digital System – DG AutoCheck

Cargo loading on aircraft

IATA is Going Digital with DG AutoCheck

When receiving inbound calls at our regulatory help desk, one of the most popular inquiries involves filling out various types of paperwork when shipping dangerous goods.

If you are looking to ship dangerous goods by air, you could now be facing a different type of compliance check involving your shipper’s declaration in the near future. The International Air Transport Association (IATA) unveiled a digital product allowing air cargo providers an easier way to verify that a shipper tendering dangerous goods has met the industry’s standards for transporting hazardous goods. Their new product is called Dangerous Goods AutoCheck (DG AutoCheck).

What is this new Digital Product?

This new Dangerous Goods Auto Check system is designed as a digital means of checking the compliance of goods designated under the Shipper’s Declaration. This tool will allow direct receipt of electronic consignment data and will automatically check the information contained in the Shipper’s Declaration against the relevant language in the IATA regulations governing the handling and transport of the goods.

Simply scan or upload the dangerous goods declaration into the tablet-based tool. That’s it!

-IATA’s Webiste

The tool will simplify a ground handler’s or airline’s decision to accept or reject a shipment during the physical inspection stage by providing a visual representation of the package with the correct marking and labelling required for transport based on the information electronically provided Continue Reading…

Excepted Quantities
UPS Excepted Quantities Update

Red semi truck on highway

UPS Makes Changes to its International Special Commodities (ISC) Program

UPS has announced it will be making changes to its International Special Commodifies (ISC) Program which enables selected customers under contract to ship certain prohibited articles.

This initiative has added more than 50 countries that can ship biological substances, shipments utilizing dry ice, and goods in excepted quantities internationally.

What does this Include?

UPS will now pick up and deliver packages containing UN3373 (Biologic Substances, Category B, Diagnostic Specimen and Clinical Specimen) as well as UN1845 (Carbon Dioxide, solid or dry ice) to 51 added countries and territories bringing the total number of countries to over 100.

In addition, the countries that were added to the list can now ship dangerous goods in excepted quantities internationally if authorized by the regulations.

The full list of approved countries can be found here:
UPS – Approved Countries

What is an Excepted Quantity?

Dangerous goods shipped in excepted quantities allow relief from certain regulations in small quantities outlined by IATA in §2.6. Be sure to check IATA for specific details and to use the label below when shipping in excepted quantities.

Excepted Quantity Label
Excepted Quantity Label (LB-USL350N)

Where can I find packaging for UN3373 Category B Specimens and dry ice shipments?

At ICC we have a wide variety of packaging specifically designed for biological packaging as well as dry ice shippers for international shipments similar to the kit below:

[caption Continue Reading…