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Hazardous Material Transportation General Security Awareness

2011 Hazardous Material Shipping rule update

NCSU Security Objectives

Specific Security Procedures

Facility Security

En Route Security

Employee Security

Actions to take in the event of a security breach

On-line documentation acknowledgement

NCSU Security Objectives
North Carolina State University has a significant amount of hazardous materials (biologicals, chemicals, radioactives) transported within campus on a daily basis. Since Hazardous materials can pose a significant security risk to any institution, the U.S. Department of Transportation has required all recipients and shippers of hazardous materials to develop a security plan. The intent of the security plan is to provide an awareness of security risks associated with hazardous materials transportation and methods to enhance transportation security.

Hazardous Materials, as defined by the United States Department of Labor, Occupational Safety and Health Administration Hazardous Communication Standard, is any chemical, radiological or biological material that poses a wide range of health hazards (such as irritation, sensitization, and carcinogenicity) and physical hazards (such as flammability, corrosion, and reactivity). Specific guidelines exist on transport and shipping hazardous materials. Hazardous material becomes a hazardous waste when a chemical, radiological or biological (as qualified as hazardous in the above definition) product, by-product, or other material that is normally discarded; when it is removed from the process and is intended for discard; when it is determined to be of no use any longer. Hazardous waste management is the control of hazardous materials when disposing or discharging into the air, water or soil.

Examples of hazardous materials include: acids, peroxides, combustibles, dry ice, radioactives, gases, bacteria, viruses, and blood samples containing pathogens. Substances considered hazardous materials can be in a pure form or contained in other products such as lasers, detectors, batteries, solutions, and biological samples.

Specific Security Procedures
In order to enhance the University’s overall security plan, one must address the issues key to a campus community, including controlling access to facilities, properly securing materials while in transit and assuring properly authorized and trained personnel are using, storing and shipping these materials correctly. In point, facility security, employee awareness and transportation security are the foundation of the security plan.

Facility Security
Facility security begins with building access. NC State University has implemented campus security procedures, as well as provided card access to specific areas on campus and areas of new construction. For laboratory/research facilities, tenants should keep doors locked when the room is not occupied to reduce unauthorized access to areas that contain hazardous materials. If possible, hazardous materials should be further secured in a storage location, including locking freezer, flammable cabinets and other laboratory storage apparatus.

Unauthorized personnel should not be allowed in laboratories without an escort. Campus identification cards are issued to all personnel, thus feel free to ask for identification of any unknown individuals in your area.

En Route Security
Transporting hazardous materials on campus roads are subject to certain Department of Transportation guidelines. When preparing to transport select materials, proper packaging is essential to prevent leaks, accidental spills or exposures.

Personnel transporting hazardous materials on campus should minimize exposure to classrooms, offices, and other non-technical, public areas by taking less populated paths or roads. The same consideration should be made when traveling near residential areas, such as dormitories.

Consideration of security procedures while transporting materials also includes attendance of carts and material handling equipment at all times while in motion; never leave a vehicle unattended while hazardous materials are inside without locking and/or securing the vehicle from theft, vandalism or other possible damage.

If you solicit the transportation of hazardous materials by an outside party, including a courier service, private company or other, before releasing the materials you should verify the identity of the carrier/driver by asking for company identification with a picture. Then, establish a clear understanding of liability with the courier, in case of accidents / incidents involving material theft or non-receipt of materials at the destination.

All couriers of hazardous materials must be properly trained in order to comply with DOT regulations for transport. Proper training would help ensure the driver has properly blocked and braced the materials; all required paperwork is complete and located with the driver of the vehicle; proper hazard placards are used when transporting certain quantities of materials.

Employee Security
Employee participation with this security plan is vital to its success. Faculty, staff, and students should be aware of their surrounding and any unusual activity. The following are examples of what one should be cognizant of:

  • Anyone walking around the perimeter of a facility, possibly examining entry points
  • Anyone watching vehicles entering and exiting facilities, or watching employee activities
  • Report all phone and email threats.
  • Anyone appearing to be performing prolonged static surveillance.
  • Look for people posing as panhandlers or vendors in order to watch the general operations of the facility.
  • Discreet use of cameras, video recorders, or note taking
  • Anyone with multiple ID’s or clothing

Actions to take in the event of a security breach
In the case of suspicious incidents or individuals, accidents or missing hazardous material, contact Campus Police immediately at 911


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