National Transport Commission (NTC) is responsible for monitoring the Transport of Dangerous Goods (DGs) laws in Australia. The key piece of law for DG transport is the Australian Code for the Transport of Dangerous Goods by Road and Rail (ADG Code). In June, a new edition of the ADG code, edition 7.3 was released. The new amendments better align Australia’s DG rules with those in place overseas.
Some of the new amendments include:
- Better clarification of the description of a dangerous good,
- Adding new materials to the list of dangerous goods,
- Requiring minimum sized markings on large packages of dangerous goods,
- Ensuring the transport of infectious substances comply with the law,
- Ensuring appropriate ventilation is on a vehicle that is transporting flammable gasses so as to prevent the build-up of vapours,
- Requiring that an emergency must plan be activated or emergency procedures followed if a dangerous situation occurs,
- Providing clearer requirements on how and where transport documents are kept on a vehicle transporting dangerous goods.
When do the updated laws come into effect?
A voluntary transition period will commence on 1 July 2014 and it is proposed that the updated laws will become mandatory on 1 July 2015.
It is very important that people reading the ADG code read it in conjunction with the specific dangerous goods legislation that applies to their state or territory e.g. your state’s DG Act and Regulations or WHS Act and Regulations, hazardous chemicals.