Handling and shipping hazardous materials is not a common daily function to the masses in the transportation industry, but a select group of people are selected to perform these functions. At a minimum, general awareness hazmat training is required by federal and international regulations. This may also include function-specific training for the specific mode or modes of transportation which they will be directly involved in, as well as security and safety training. According to Title 49, Code of Federal Regulations (49 CFR), hazmat employees must undergo general awareness training not only once in their career, but once every three years. This is not a perfunctory exercise in bureaucracy. There are a great many reasons to do this in addition to more specialized modal training. Here are three ways you can benefit from general awareness hazmat training.
Understanding General Concepts
A specialized training course for whichever mode of transport you will be involved in is necessary, of course. However, general awareness training lays the foundation for your understanding of the concepts that underpin all hazardous materials training. You need this knowledge in order to truly understand everything else. Undergoing more specialized hazmat training without first undergoing general awareness hazmat training could leave you frustrated and confused.
To give an example: Hazmat University’s International Air Training will teach you the specific rules of the International Air Transport Association’s (IATA) Dangerous Goods Regulations (DGR). On the other hand, general awareness training will reinforce what dangerous goods are, through giving a definition and listing examples, and will cover the nine hazard classes of dangerous goods as defined by the applicable hazardous material regulations.
Receiving Summarized Information
Sometimes you will want to find small details to help you understand the specifics of a subject. Other times, you may want to receive the most important facts, just as a reminder. General awareness courses provide a bird’s-eye view of the multimodal transport of dangerous goods and the requirements for shipping. It is also important to note that even when taking general awareness hazmat training, there is a reason for why hazmat employees are required by law to retake this training at least once every three years: it refreshes their memory of the most essential aspects of their line of work.
Knowing What Applies to Everything
Different sets of hazardous materials regulations govern different modes of transportation – naturally, anyone involved in transporting hazardous materials by vessel does not need to comply with all the rules that the IATA DGR insists must be applied to transport by air. However, there are some commonalities shared between these sets of regulations, and certain practices that federal and international regulations mandates require for anyone handling hazardous materials, regardless of the mode of transportation. General awareness hazmat training is not divided into separate programs for transport by ground, sea, or air because it provides information that all hazmat employees must be familiar with.
These are only three ways you can benefit from general awareness hazmat training, and there is certainly much more you can gain. Hazmat University provides its own annually updated program for this, as well as other online training courses to suit the needs of most hazmat employees. Learn more about our Dangerous Goods General Awareness Training and check out the other courses available on our website today.