Transporting hazardous materials
A hazardous material is any solid, liquid or gaseous substance that by its physical, chemical or biological characteristics that can cause harm to humans, the environment and property.
The United Nations classifies hazardous material types as 9.
Class 1: Explosive
It comprises explosive substances, explosive articles and substances producing pyrotechnic explosive effect.
Class 2: Gases
It refers to any type of compressed, liquefied or dissolved gas under pressure. Three subclasses are distinguished: Flammable Gases, Non-Flammable Gases, and Poisonous Gases.
Class 3: Liquids
They are liquids, mixtures of liquids, or liquids containing solids in solution or suspension, which release flammable vapors at relatively low temperatures. These are classified according to the flammability point, i.e. the lowest temperature at which the liquid releases vapours in sufficient quantity to form a flammable mixture in the vicinity of its surface (petrol).
Class 4: Solids
It includes spontaneously flammable substances and substances that in contact with water emit flammable gases. They are substances that ignite easily, and consequently pose a fire hazard under normal industrial conditions.
Class 5: Oxidizers
They are substances that, even without being combustible, cause or contribute to combustion by releasing oxygen. Do not confuse with oxidizing substances or electron receptors in chemical reactions.
Class 6: Poisons
They are solids or liquids that can cause serious and harmful effects on human health if their vapors are inhaled, ingested or come into contact with the skin or mucous membranes (potassium cyanide, Mercury chloride (I), Mercury chloride (II)).
Class 7: Radioactive
Radioactive material means all those with an activity greater than 70 kBq/kg (kilobequerelios per kilogram) or its equivalent of 2 nCi/g (nanocurios per gram) (Uranium, Plutonium).
Class 8: Corrosive
Acid or basic substances that cause visible lesions on the skin and other living tissues or corrode metals. Some of these substances are volatile and release irritating vapors; can release toxic gases when they are broken down (sodium hydroxide, sulfuric acid).
Class 9: Dangerous Mixes
They are substances that pose dangers to man and the environment, but their effects on them do not classify as any of the above classes (e.g. dry ice).
Each of the aforementioned materials has specific regulations for its transport since it is dangerous materials increases the risk of both human and environmental accidents. (Transport of hazardous materials in Isotank)