Chemical Industry Supply Chain: All International Regulations
Chemical Industry Supply Chain: All International Regulations
8 September 2023 - by: Dorina Lisnic

Chemical Industry Supply Chain: All International Regulations

Safety, compliance with environmental laws, and the transport of hazardous goods are the primary challenges in the chemical industry. Particularly, the transport of these substances, which are an integral part of our daily lives, poses significant challenges for logistics companies, as they must adhere to stringent regulations. What are the current regulations, and what precautions must supply chain actors take to effectively address these challenges?

The production of most final products relies on the processing of semi-finished and chemical intermediates. These materials are necessarily manufactured in highly specialized facilities, which are not always located near final destination plants. In this context, supply chains come into play, managing both the transport of raw materials and finished products.
Providing logistics services to the chemical industry, including the handling of hazardous goods, requires close collaboration, the ability to identify the most suitable specialized resources, and the most appropriate methods for each shipment. It is crucial to strictly adhere to current safety regulations and the classification of such substances. Hazardous goods are categorized into the following classes based on their potential hazards:

  • Class 1: Explosives
  • Class 2: Gases
  • Class 3: Flammable Liquids
  • Class 4.1: Flammable Solids, Self-reactive substances, and desensitized explosive solids
  • Class 4.2: Substances liable to spontaneous combustion
  • Class 4.3: Substances that, on contact with water, emit flammable gases
  • Class 5.1: Oxidizing Substances
  • Class 5.2: Organic Peroxides
  • Class 6.1: Toxic Substances
  • Class 6.2: Infectious Substances
  • Class 7: Radioactive Material
  • Class 8: Corrosive Substances
  • Class 9: Miscellaneous Dangerous Goods

To ensure complete safety, it is necessary for manufacturers, warehouse operators, shippers, freight forwarders, and recipients to adopt appropriate standards and procedures. All involved parties must adhere to hierarchical regulations and coordinate with each other, establishing the conditions and requirements for the transport of hazardous goods.
The transport of these types of goods is regulated based on the mode of transport used, including aspects such as packaging, hazard criteria, transport conditions, labelling of packages/transport units, and required documentation, as well as the vehicles used for transport, and so forth.

For international road transport, applies the European Agreement concerning the International Carriage of Dangerous Goods by Road, better known as ADR. This agreement covers not only the necessary safety measures for transport but also the cargo and goods involved, as well as the parties responsible.
Receiving specific training to obtain the ADR Professional Training Certificate is indeed essential. This certificate regulates both the classification of hazardous substances and the proper equipment for their transport. Furthermore, road transport requires the use of packaging specifically selected according to the hazard class of the goods. The vehicle used for transport must be authorized for such transport and adequately equipped for the classes of materials being transported. Each shipment requires specific equipment based on the type of cargo. It is essential for the vehicle to clearly indicate the presence of hazardous goods in the cargo compartment through hazard signs and labels prominently displayed on the sides of the vehicle.

For international train transport, the Regulation concerning the International Carriage of Dangerous Goods by Rail, known as RID, is enforced. RID is established by the OTIF, the Intergovernmental Organization for International Carriage by Rail. The official text of RID is available in French, German, and English and undergoes a biennial revision by the RID committee of experts. This revision takes into account technological advancements and emerging needs in the railway transport sector over the years.

The international reference regulation for maritime transport of dangerous goods is the IMDG, short for the International Maritime Dangerous Goods Code, prepared by the International Maritime Organization (IMO), and the ADN, the European Agreement concerning the International Carriage of Dangerous Goods by Inland Waterways. To request the maritime transport of chemicals, it is necessary to complete the "Multimodal Dangerous Goods Form," a declaration that provides all the necessary information about the cargo, including potential marine pollutants.

Finally, for the air transport of hazardous goods, the global reference is the Dangerous Goods Regulation (DGR) manual by IATA, the International Air Transport Association. Having the IATA DGR certification is a requirement that attests to the logistic operator's competence in handling such shipments. In particular, for air transport, prohibited hazardous goods include explosive substances, substances that can react dangerously, ignite, emit toxic gases, be corrosive, or be flammable.

Managing transport becomes more complex in the case of multimodal handling because it requires compliance with multiple intersecting regulations, with a primary focus on safeguarding the safety of goods, the public, and personnel. To provide seamless services, substantial collaboration among the various stakeholders is essential.

Whether by land, sea, or air, FERCAM Logistics & Transport offers various solutions for the safe and efficient transport of hazardous goods. With the right equipment and efficient methods, we ensure safety and compliance with regulations to deliver your exceptional cargo securely.