Shipping Hazardous Materials (HAZMAT) or Dangerous Goods overseas is strictly regulated process: loading, storage, labeling, documentation etc. Dangerous goods (DG) may only be loaded on the carrier and ship internationally with explicit approval from the shipping line. The shipper has to submit hazardous goods documentation (IMO declaration) with the shipping line prior to scheduling ocean freight transportation. Exporting or importing from USA of hazardous materials internationally, requires more transit time and is subject to hazardous materials surcharges from the shipping line. Shipper is entirely responsible for providing the proper documentation and correct cargo description for the ocean transportation of hazardous materials. Incorrect classification, identification, improper IMO declaration and missing documentation will detain and delay the dangerous goods shipment.
Most of the international shipping lines will not approve dangerous goods other than IMO Classes 3, 8 and 9. Some classes of hazardous goods require specialized equipment form the shipping line to transport dangerous goods cargo.
Dangerous Goods Terms & Classes in Ocean Freight Transportation
IMO Class – International Maritime Organization hazardous materials class.
PACKING GROUP – specify the level of protective material required during ocean transportation.
- Packing Group I most protective packing required - great danger;
- Packing Group II, medium danger
- Packing Group III, small danger.
UN Number United Nations Number. This is internationally recognized number assigned to a specific class or material of dangerous cargo. FLASH POINT - temperature at which the material can be ignited or vaporize to form an ignitable mixture in air.
Hazardous Materials (HAZMAT) Classes
- Flammable Liquid
- Flammable Solids
- Oxidizing Agents