Dangerous goods

8. Dangerous goods
Dangerous goods
8.1. Packaged dangerous goods
8.1.1. General requirements
Many cargoes transported in packages have hazardous
properties that could cause fire and explosion, injuries or
environmental damage. Emergencies could occur anywhere
in the transportation chain. However, as a result of inter-
nationally recognized rules for carriage by sea, which have
applied since 1965, millions of tonnes of dangerous goods
are safely handled at ports every year.
8.1.2. International arrangements
The transport by sea of dangerous goods in packaged
form is required to be carried out in accordance with the
International Maritime Dangerous Goods Code (IMDG
Code). The Code became mandatory from 1 January 2004
under the provisions of Chapter VII of the IMO’s SOLAS
Convention. Produced by the IMO, it is based upon recom-
mendations published by the United Nations Committee of
Experts on the Transport of Dangerous Goods. The IMDG
Code is revised and republished every two years.
8.1.3. United Nations classification
1. The United Nations (UN) system of classification of
packaged dangerous goods is an integral part of the inter-
national provisions. Goods to be transported are classified
according to their primary hazard by the shipper or con-
signor. The nine UN classes are:
class 1 – explosives;
subdivided into six divisions 1.1-1.6;
Safety and health in ports
class 2 – gases;
subdivided into flammable, non-flammable and toxic
class 3 – flammable liquids;
class 4 – solids;
subdivided into flammable, spontaneously combust-
ible and dangerous when wet;
class 5 – substances containing oxygen;
subdivided into oxidizing agents and organic
class 6 – toxic substances;
subdivided into toxic and infectious substances;
class 7 – radioactive substances;
subdivided into three separate levels of radioactiv-
ity plus fissile material;
class 8 – corrosives;
class 9 – miscellaneous dangerous goods not covered by
the other classes.
2. The IMDG Code also recognizes that many sub-
stances, as well as being potentially dangerous to humans,
can be environmentally hazardous to the marine environ-
ment. Accordingly, for the marine mode only, it uses the
term “marine pollutants” for those dangerous goods to
which this applies. There are also two UN Numbers in class
9 for solid and liquid substances that are not hazardous to
humans but are hazardous in the marine environment, e.g.

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