2018 DG Symposium moderator Geoff Leach on “The Global Regulatory Landscape”

Geoff Leach, founder and director of The Dangerous Goods Office, Ltd., will moderate a panel on The Global Regulatory Landscape at the 13th annual Dangerous Goods Symposium, September 5–7, 2018, in Rosemont, Illinois.

As one of the Dangerous Goods industry’s most recognizable veterans, Geoff Leach is a natural choice to moderate Thursday’s panel on recent and upcoming changes to DG regulations. Other panelists will include:

• Dave Brennan, IATA, on air transport
• Richard Masters, DG Masters Ltd., on IMDG
• Ross McLachlan, The DG Office UK, on ADR
• Diego Gotelli, CIQUIME, on Mexico and Latin America
• Duane Pfund, PHMSA, with a UN update
Leach recently shared a few of the topics the panel will cover. Here’s a preview.

Smarter lithium battery regulations

“It’s not an earth-shattering biennium,” says Leach, referring to the two-year cycle in which international regulations are reviewed and released. “But there are always changes to some degree.”

Many of those changes, you’ll not be the slightest bit surprised to hear, concern lithium batteries:

  • “There is a movement to develop packaging to take lithium battery safety to the next level,” he says, referring to the upcoming ICAO G-27 standards. “It should provide comfort to those who don’t want to carry their devices with them on passenger aircraft.”
  • A new UN number—3536—will identify “massive batteries, the size of a shipping container, designed to power whole towns.” These will be banned from air transport without a special exemption.
  • A new provision will prohibit overpacking lithium batteries with flammable materials and ensure carriers don’t load them close together. “You would hope no one was loading batteries with petrol anyway,” Leach says, “but the new Class 9 battery labels make it easier for shippers and carriers to segregate them.”

Other new hazmat regulatory developments

Leach touched on other subjects the panel is likely to discuss:

  • New classification criteria for corrosives that will bring them into closer alignment with GHS standards recognizing that materials aren’t tested on animals anymore.
  • New provisions for articles containing DG in machinery, which were formerly limited to articles small enough to qualify as Limited Quantities, but can now be classified by the hazard class of the regulated material—e.g., fuel—contained in the article.
  • Changing “risk” to “hazard” in publications. “This is a correction of a philosophical mistake we’ve lived with for years,” Leach says. “Risk is likelihood combined with outcome, whereas hazard is just the outcome. A chemical may present a subsidiary corrosive hazard, which is still a danger even if flammability is a greater risk.”

The 13th annual Dangerous Goods Symposium—September 5–7, 2018

Leach says he finds the Dangerous Goods Symposium “…refreshing. The informality of the event, bringing together regulators and shippers, contributes to a level playing field. It’s very interactive—you’re not just sitting there watching presentations.

“I see lots of new people every time, people who are new to the subject of Dangerous Goods. You mustn’t feel inhibited about asking questions, because there’s so much knowledge to be had. There’s no such thing as a daft question.”

Labelmaster will host the 13th annual Dangerous Goods Symposium September 5–7, 2018, at The Loews Hotel in Rosemont, Illinois. You’ll never find more DG knowledge or experience in the same place, anywhere.

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Labelmaster is a full-service provider of goods and services for hazardous materials and Dangerous Goods professionals, shippers, transport operators and EH&S providers. See our full line of solutions at labelmaster.com.


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