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How to complete a hazmat shipping paper

Although there are exceptions, the Hazardous Materials Regulations (HMR) generally require each shipment of hazardous materials to be accompanied by a properly prepared shipping paper. The shipping paper may be a bill of lading, waybill, manifest, or other document provided it contains all the required information.

This how-to guide describes the steps involved in properly completing a shipping paper that meets the HMR.

  1. Provide the number and type of packages. For example, 10 drums, 100 skids, etc.
  2. Place an “X” in the “HM” column to indicate the material is a hazardous material. The letters “RQ” may be entered in place of the “X”.
    • Because this shipping paper has a column captioned “HM” for h“azardous materials” the letter “X” may be placed in that column, indicating the description that follows identifies a hazardous material.
    • If there is no such column on a shipping paper, but there is hazardous material and non-hazardous material in the same shipment, the hazardous material must be listed first on the shipping paper, be entered in a clearly contrasting color, or highlighted in a contrasting color to distinguish them from non-hazardous materials.
  3. Enter the hazmat identification number. See Column 4 of the Hazardous Materials Table (HMT) in 172.101.
  4. Enter the Description of Articles, which is the material’s basic description, including the proper shipping name; see Column 2 of the HMT.
  5. Enter the material’s hazard class(es) or division number(s), if required. See Column 3 of the HMT. Subsidiary hazard class or division number should be entered in parentheses.
  6. Enter the material’s packing group. See Column 5 of the HMT.
  7. Enter the total quantity of material. Use mass or volume or activity for Class 7 material, or net explosive mass for Class 1 material. Include the unit of measurement, for example, “3,400 pounds.”
  8. Enter the total weight of the containers that contain the hazardous material.
  9. The shipper’s certification must be legibly signed by an authorized representative of the shipper.
  10. In most cases, an emergency response telephone number must be entered. The emergency response phone number must be monitored at all times that the hazardous material is in transportation, by a person who has knowledge of the hazardous material and has comprehensive emergency response and incident mitigation information for the material or has immediate access to such a person.
  11. The proper placards should be supplied by the shipper. If the driver already has the correct placards in place, the driver may supply the placards and sign the form as indicated.