Many of life’s most basic activities have changed since September 11, 2001. Security has become a major focus in the lives of all Americans. This is especially true in the transportation industries as we see at airport security screening areas and stadiums. Unknown to many though is the increased security measures taken in the trucking industry regarding the transportation of hazardous materials. This has become every hazardous materials trucker’s responsibility to ensure their dangerous cargo does not end up in the wrong hands.
Many of the steps required to maintain a safe and secure vehicle sound like common sense, but they must become a large part of the truck driver’s training program on a regular basis. The goal of hazardous material security is the safety of the truck driver and the public in general. The Department of Transportation and the Transportation Security Administration are responsible for safety on the roads and they mandate this security training.
To ensure safety, HAZMAT drivers must keep their vehicles secured at all times; this should include tamper-proof locks on the trailers. Drivers also need to remain vigilant in looking for suspicious people near their vehicle and call the proper authorities when necessary. A pre-trip inspection should also be performed to ensure nothing has been tampered with while the driver was away from the vehicle. It is also recommended that a driver make as few stops as possible when transporting hazardous materials to lessen the chances of coming in contact with suspicious people.
Much of this hazardous materials security training may sound like common sense, but it all should be followed, and the security training repeated at least every three years to ensure it remains fresh. These are minor steps that can truly go a long way to keeping the nation’s roads safer.