Who Needs Hazmat Training?
Hazardous materials shippers must comply with complex, stringent regulations. Hazmat training is mandatory for managers and employees who prepare hazmat shipments for ground, air, or vessel transportation. Penalties for non-compliance increase every year.
For hazmat training violations, the minimum fine is more than $500 per day, per employee. Below, you can find guidance and details about US DOT's hazmat training mandate.
- Offer hazardous materials for transportation;
- Package, mark, or label hazardous materials for transportation;
- Load or unload hazardous materials transport vehicles;
- Transport hazardous materials;
- Receive and forward packages containing hazardous materials;
- Manufacture packaging for use in transporting hazardous materials; or
- Test hazardous material packaging.
A brief list of employees who are likely to fit that definition includes anyone who:
- Classifies hazardous materials (analyzes or researches literature);
- Reads or interprets hazardous materials regulations;
- Signs a hazmat shipping paper or hazardous waste manifest;
- Determines if a material is a hazardous waste or hazardous substance (determines RQs);
- Assigns packing groups or hazard zones;
- Is involved in selecting shipping descriptions;
- Designs, selects, purchases, or fills packages;
- Loads or unloads hazardous materials (e.g., warehouses or loading docks);
- Determines any markings or labels to be applied to a package;
- Determines if placards are required, provides placards, or affixes placards;
- Determines what should appear on shipping papers or actually fills out shipping papers;
- Determines emergency response information to be included with shipping papers;
- Selects carriers or modes of transportation to be used;
- Determines if a package can be reused, if a package is empty, or if a package needs reconditioning (e.g., tank cars, cargo tanks, and drums);
- Responds to damaged containers, spills, or leaks and reports incidents; and
- Operates any vehicle or equipment used to transport hazardous materials.
Anyone who directly supervises those performing any of the above activities also needs to be trained. In addition, hazmat employers must also assure that anyone performing any regulated function on their behalf, such as a contractor, has been fully trained before they begin their work.
The hazmat employer is responsible for determining the level and details of training based on an employee's job functions. The DOT does, however, require certain categories of training.
- General Awareness Training: At a minimum, all hazmat employees must be given a general understanding of the entire hazardous materials transportation program, so that they know how their jobs fit into the system.
- Function-specific Training: All hazmat employees must also be trained on any specific job functions that they perform in relation to the hazardous materials regulations.
- Safety Training: Persons handling or potentially exposed to hazardous materials during the cycle of transportation (e.g., drivers, loaders, loading dock workers, and warehousemen) must be trained in safe handling and emergency response procedures applicable to the hazards to which they may be exposed.
- Security Awareness Training: All hazmat employees must be trained to recognize and protect against potential terrorist threats involving hazardous material shipments.
- Security Plan Training: Each hazmat employee preparing or transporting certain high-risk shipments (as defined at 49 CFR 172.800(b)) must also be trained in company security objectives, organizational structure and specific procedures, and responsibilities or actions required from them.
- Driver Training: In addition, specific requirements for training of hazardous materials drivers are found at 49 CFR Part 177 and Parts 350-399.
In addition, hazmat employee training must be updated any time DOT issues any new or revised rule applicable to the duties of a particular employee. [49 CFR 172.702(b)] The training must be completed by each employee "prior to performance of a function affected by the new or revised rule." [61 FR 27169, May 30, 1996] Because most rules have a delayed effective date or a transition period for compliance, Lion believes that annual update training will meet the needs of most HMT compliance managers or supervisors. Managers will then need to determine what updates affect which groups of hazmat employees in their operations.
Finally, update training must also be provided if an employee's job duties change and those new duties are subject to DOT regulation.
Hazmat Training to Ship Limited Quantities
The DOT requires that any hazmat employee training must include:
- Testing of each individual (written, oral, by demonstration, or otherwise) to assure that the person was trained; and
- Certification by the employer, in a "record of training" kept in the employer's files, that the employee was trained and tested.
All of Lion's training products and services are designed to train you in regulatory requirements for management of hazardous materials. While our courses and workshops are not designed to teach you how to be a trainer, you will learn what you need to teach your personnel.
DOT Hazmat Training for Managers
Lion offers hazmat training in open-enrollment workshops across the US; live, instructor-led webinars; and self-paced online courses. In the area of DOT hazardous materials transportation, we recommend the Hazmat Ground Shipper Certification (DOT) workshop, webinar, or online course.
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- What is your style of learning?
- If you like classroom-style, live, instructor-led training where you can talk face to face with your neighbor or with the instructor during breaks and work on exercises with others, Lion's public workshops offer all of these.
- If you prefer to work at your own pace, have the option to review the information you've learned as many times as you need to, work on exercises when you feel you're ready, and still have e-mail dialog with an instructor, web-based training courses provide this approach to learning.
- How much time do you have?
- If you'd like to get out of the office for two days, get your training all at once and head back to work with a bunch of fresh ideas and tools to apply to your job, the public workshops offer all of these.
- If you find that you can't afford to take two full days away from the office, or just prefer to get your training in increments, applying the information as you learn, you might prefer Lion's online training courses, which are divided into brief, focused lessons.
- When do you need training?
- Lion presents over 200 workshops per year nationwide, so chances are one will come to a major metropolitan area convenient for you during the year. Some workshops are presented in key cities more than once per year! If you've decided to attend a public workshop, you can plan to attend the one most convenient for you.
- If you want access to training immediately and whenever you need it, without traveling, Lion's online training courses are available 24 hours a day via the Internet.
As such, the person signing the manifest is performing a regulated function and would be required to receive training as a hazmat employee. DOT Hazmat Training for Signing a Manifest.
Read more about training required to sign the Hazardous Waste Manifest.
- The hazmat employee’s name;
- The most recent training completion date;
- A description, copy, or location of the training materials used;
- The name and address of the person performing the training; and
- A certification by the hazmat employer that the hazmat employee has been trained and tested.
Hazardous materials are categorized in nine Hazard Classes: Explosives (1), gases (2), flammable liquids (3), flammable solids (4), oxidizers (5), toxic/poison substances (6), radioactive materials (7), corrosives (8), and "miscellaneous" hazardous materials (9).
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Multimodal Hazmat Training for Ground, Air, and Vessel Shippers
The Entry Level Driver Training (ELDT) Rule created minimum training requirements for truck drivers seeking to obtain a commercial drivers’ license (CDL) for the first time.
The Rule also requires training for drivers who want to upgrade their existing CDL or obtain a hazardous materials (H), school bus (S), or passenger (P) endorsement for the first time.
Drivers must obtain ELDT training from a provider registered with DOT FMCSA.
Lion does not offer a training to comply with the ELDT rule. Find a provider.
US DOT requires all hazmat employees—including drivers of motor vehicles carrying hazardous materials—to complete training that meets minimum requirements listed in 49 CFR 172, Subpart H. Training must be repeated at least every three years.
Hazmat Employee Training (49 CFR 172.704)
Lion’s Shipping Hazmat by Ground—Driver (DOT) online training provides general awareness, security awareness, and function-specific hazmat training required for all hazmat employees.
- The online training is not intended to satisfy any part of the ELDT training rule.
- The online training is not a CDL exam prep course. It familiarizes drivers with their responsibilities under US DOT’s Hazardous Materials Regulations (HMR).
While these groups typically do not pre-approve training programs that offer certification points, professionals can submit Lion CEUs for approval from their certifying organization.