Q. Explain in brief, the purpose and usefulness of IMDG Code.
Ans. IMDG Code is required for ships carrying dangerous goods in packaged form and limited quantity. It has Vol 1, Vol 2 and supplements.
An internationally agreed system, allows grouping dangerous goods together, based on the hazards they present in carriage and transportation. It guides in respect of packagings / tanks strength and construction. There is a provision of labels and other identifying marks to identify dangerous goods in transport.
The system requires standard documentation to be provided when dangerous goods are being transported. The segregation and compatibility aspects are taken care in order to prevent undue influence of cargoes on one another. It guides regarding principles in respect of, where to place dangerous goods on board ship to ensure safe transport. System also provides emergency response advice and a flowchart based medical attendance procedure to handle an injured or affected person.
Q. Which ships must carry IMDG Code?
Ans. The provisions contained in this Code are applicable to all ships to which the International Convention for the Safety of Life at Sea, 1974 (SOLAS), as amended, applies and which are carrying dangerous goods as defined in regulation 1 of part A of chapter VII of that Convention.
However, 188.8.131.52 of IMDG Code also states that, all ships, irrespective of type and size, carrying substances, materials or articles identified in this Code as marine pollutants are subject to the provisions of this Code.
Q. Do the lamps come under dangerous goods?
Ans. There is a certain type of lamps, (considering quantity of dangerous goods, carriage and packaging) not subject to the Code provided that they do not contain radioactive material and do not contain mercury in quantities above those specified in special provision.
Q. Where is the reference made to IMDG Code in SOLAS?
Ans. Part A of chapter VII of the International Convention for the Safety of Life at Sea, 1974 (SOLAS), as amended, deals with the carriage of dangerous goods in packaged form.
Q. What regulations are included in part A of chapter VII?
Regulation 1 gives definitions for 1 IMDG Code 2 Dangerous goods 3 Packaged form.
Regulation 2 is Application.
Regulation 3 is requirements for the carriage of dangerous goods.
Regulation 4 is documents.
Regulation 5 is cargo Securing Manual.
Regulation 6 is reporting of incidents involving dangerous goods.
Q. What does the regulation 4 say about documents?
- Transport information relating to the carriage of dangerous goods in packaged form and the container/ vehicle packing certificate shall be in accordance with the relevant provisions of the IMDG Code and shall be made available to the person or organization designated by the Port State Authority.
- Each ship carrying dangerous goods in packaged form shall have a special list, manifest or stowage plan setting forth, in accordance with the relevant provisions of the IMDG Code, the dangerous goods on board and the location thereof. A copy of one of these documents shall be made available before departure to the person or organization designated by the port State authority.
Q. What is the regulation in respect of reporting in respect of dangerous goods?
- When an incident takes place involving the loss or likely loss overboard of dangerous goods in packaged form into the sea, the Master, or other person having charge of the ship, shall report the particulars of such an incident without delay and to the fullest extent possible to the nearest coastal State. The report shall be drawn up based on general principles and guidelines developed by the Organization.
- In the event of the ship referred to in paragraph 1 being abandoned, or in the event of a report from such a ship being incomplete or unobtainable, the company, shall, to the fullest extent possible, assume the obligations placed upon the Master by this regulation.
Q. Which annex of MARPOL deals with prevention of pollution by harmful substances carried by sea in packaged form?
Ans. Annex III Regulations for the prevention of pollution by harmful substances carried by sea in packaged form.
Q. How is harmful substance defined in Annex III?
Ans. For the purpose of this Annex, “harmful substances” are those substances which are identified as marine pollutants in the International Maritime Dangerous Goods Code (IMDG Code) or which meet the criteria in the Appendix of this Annex.
Q. What are the different types of harmful substances as provided in Annex III?
Ans. For the purposes of this Annex, substances identified by any one of the following criteria are harmful substances:
(a) Acute (short-term) aquatic hazard.
(b) Long-term aquatic hazard, which are further catagorised as:
(i) Non-rapidly degradable substances for which there are adequate chronic toxicity data available;
(ii) Rapidly degradable substances for which there are adequate chronic toxicity data available; and
(iii) Substances for which adequate chronic toxicity data are not available.
Q. How is the classification and division of dangerous goods done?
Ans. Various substances which are transported, are categorized into classes from 1 to 9 according to the hazard or the most characteristic of the hazards they present. Some classes are further subdivided into divisions.
Q. Describe class 1 & 2.
Class 1: Explosives
Class 1 explosives are subdivided in 6 sub-classes according to the compatibility:
- Division 1.1: substances and articles, which have a mass explosion hazard
- Division 1.2: substances and articles, which have a projection, hazard but not a mass explosion hazard
- Division 1.3: substances and articles, which have a fire hazard and either a minor blast hazard or a minor projection hazard or both, but not a mass explosion hazard
- Division 1.4: substances and articles, which present no significant hazard
- Division 1.5: very insensitive substances, which have a mass explosion hazard
- Division 1.6: extremely insensitive articles which do not have a mass explosion hazard
Class 2 is gases. Gases are carried in liquid, compressed, or refrigerated form. Based on the properties, whether asphyxiant, oxidizing, flammable, or toxic they, these gases are divided into three subclasses.
Subclass 2.1 is. Flammable gas. The gas is ignitable when it comes in contact with a heat source Examples are propylene, ethane, or butane. The label must contain a symbol with a black or white flame on a red background, with the number “2” at the bottom.
Subclass 2.2 has Non-flammable, non-toxic gases. These are gases that displace oxygen, causing asphyxiation; Helium for example causes such effect. The label contains an image of a black or white bottle of gas on a green background, with the number “2” at the bottom.
Subclass 2.3 covers toxic gases. These are gases that can cause serious injury or death when inhaled. They can be flammable, corrosive, or oxidizing, such as chlorine. The label contains an image of a black skull over black crossbones. The background is white and it contains the number “2” at the bottom.
Q. What is the difference between flammable and inflammable?
Ans. They mean the same.
Q. What is the difference between flammable and combustible?
Ans. Flammable and combustible materials differ based on the temperatures at which when exposed will catch fire. Flammable substances will ignite at lower temperatures than combustibles when exposed to an ignition source. Such specific temperature, is called flash point. This is what separates flammable and combustible substances.
Q. What are flammable liquids and flammable solids?
Ans. Class 3 is allotted to flammable liquids.
This classification includes flammable liquids and insensitive liquid explosives. Examples contain turpentine, gasoline, paints, varnish, etc. The label contains a symbol with a black or white flame on a red background. Label is very similar to 2.1. The difference being in this case a number “3” at the bottom.
The class 4, ‘flammable solids’ is divided into the following subcategories based on the properties of the solids:
Subclass 4.1. Flammable solids, self-reactive substances, and desensitized explosives. These solids are liable to spontaneous combustion. The label contains a black flame on a white background with seven vertical red stripes and the number “4” at the bottom.
Subclass 4.2. These are spontaneously combustible substances. This means that they could suddenly ignite when they come in contact with the air or water during transport. Coal, ferrous metal shavings, wet cotton, etc. come in this category. The label contains a black flame on a background that is white on top and red on the bottom, with the number “4”.
Subclass 4.3. Flammable gases are emitted when substance comes in contact with water. Some of the most common materials in this subclass include sodium, potassium, and calcium carbide. The label contains a black or white flame on a blue background with the number “4” at the bottom.
Q. Describe class 5 & 6.
Ans. Class 5 is ‘oxidizing substances and organic peroxides’. The class is divided into two subcategories.
1. Subclass 5.1. ‘oxidizing substances’. Liquids or solids that can cause combustion or create a flammable environment. E.g. Ammonium Nitrate. The label contains a black flame on top of a circle, with a yellow background and the number “5.1” at the bottom.
2. Subclass 5.2. ‘Organic peroxides’. These substances are derived from Hydrogen Peroxide. They may only be transported in certain quantities in special cargo units. The label contains a black or white flame with a background that is red on top and yellow on the bottom. It also contains the number “5.2” at the bottom.
Class 6 is ‘toxic substances’. This class is divided into the following subcategories based on the properties of the substance:
Subclass 6.1. Toxic substances. Serious medical issues, even death can be caused by inhalation. The skin based absorption, or ingestion is also dangerous. The label for this subclass contains a black skull and crossbones over a white background. It is similar to the label for class 2.3, toxic gases.
Subclass 6.2. Infectious substances. Samples of blood, excrement, lab cultures, etc, containing bacteria, etc are carried sometimes say under a WHO project. These substances can cause infection.. The label for this subclass may contain the words “Infectious substances” at the bottom. The label includes a symbol made up of three black crescent moons on top of a circle, with a white background and the number “6” at the bottom.
Q. Describe class 7.
Ans. Class 7 is ‘radioactive material’. This class has materials such as uranium, plutonium, and thorium. There are 4 categories of radioactive material.
Category I. Packages with a maximum surface radiation level of 0.5 mrem/hr(milliroentgens per hour). In case of containers there are no packages with higher categories. The label for this category is white with a black trefoil shape; below this is the word “Radioactive”, followed by a small red vertical line. The label also contains remarks and number “7” at the bottom.
Category II. Packages with a surface radiation level greater than 0.5 mrem/hr (milliroentgens per hour), but no more than 50 mrem/hr. The transport index must not exceed 1.0.
Category III. Packages with a maximum surface radiation level of 200 mrem/hr. Transport index of containers is less than or equal to 1.0.
Category IV: Fissionable materials. This label is white and must contain the word “FISSIONABLE” in black at the top. At the bottom is a box that says “Critical Care Index” and the number “7”.
Q. What are corrosive substances? What is the class?Class 8 is corrosive substances.
Ans. A corrosive substance may attack a wide variety of materials, but the term is usually applied to chemicals that can cause chemical burns. These substances have a destructive effect . Thus, they are damaging to skin tissue. Sulfuric acid for instance is corrosive. The label has two test tubes with the number “8”.
Q. What is the significance of class 9?
Ans. Class 9 is ‘miscellaneous dangerous substances and articles’.
This category includes dangerous substances not included in the other classes, but can cause considerable danger. Lithium batteries, dry ice, etc. can be such cargoes. The label is white with seven vertical black lines on the top half and the number “‘9”, underlined, in the bottom half.
Q. What are the placards for elevated temperature mark & environmentally hazardous substances?
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