Dangerous Goods Newsletter January 2020

Dangerous Goods Newsletter January 2020

Welcome to Store-Safe's Dangerous Goods January 2020 newsletter.

We've compiled the most relevant dangerous goods news articles from Australia and overseas from the AIDGC newsletter and other sources. In the January issue, read about the new resources for chemical storage from Safe Work Australia, frequently asked questions about Australia’s Industrial Chemical Introduction Scheme and how you can assist emergency services in case of a fire event at your premises.


The AIDGC is an independent industry body that exists for the benefit of the dangerous goods industry, regulatory authorities, government, business and the general community. There are over 60 professional members who offer dangerous goods related services.

To search for a Dangerous Goods Consultant, search the membership list here.

To learn more about the benefits of becoming a member of the AIDGC and to join, visit the AIDGC website.

WA Dangerous Goods and Road Transport Decoder App

The app is based on the requirements of the Western Australian regulations for the transport of explosives and dangerous goods, the Australian Code for the Transport of Dangerous Goods by Road and Rail, 7th Edition (ADG Code) and the Australian Code for the Transport of Explosives by Road and Rail, 3rd Edition (AEC3).This app is limited to the transport requirements for roads open to the public. It does not apply tothe transport of dangerous goods in mobile processing units (MPUs) or mobile mixing units (MMUs), nor does it cover the transport of dangerous goods at mine sites.

Bushfire sparks Fireworks Explosion in Ipswich

Residents who were forced to flee a dangerous grass fire in Ipswich on Saturday thought "the whole town would go up" after the blaze ignited a shipping container full of fireworks and flames edged dangerously close to homes. A shipping container of fireworks on Craig Stevenson's property exploded when the fire spread to his land. Two other containers weren't damaged. He said the fireworks were stored in a way to minimise the risk of damage. “If you look at the structure, you can see that the way it's made that the fireworks actually exploded and the door came open and it all worked the way it should —luckily." "Thankfully they're all properly mounded and they're well maintained and luckily there is a lot of firefighting equipment around.”

Source: ABC News

Graham White at the site of one of the illicit chemical dumps in Epping. CREDIT:DARRIAN TRAYNOR

The man who made a toxic waste disaster

Greed, lax oversight and poor regulation allowed one man to distort the national market for toxic waste disposal and create an environmental catastrophe.

But five years on, we know the truth. Covered by a thin layer of topsoil were the pits that White had dug and that he was filling with toxic waste — millions of litres of chemicals and tonnes of asbestos-contaminated products brought by the truckload.

Source: The Age

Waste chemicals moved to South Australia because of 'significant' storage crisis in Victoria

Hundreds of thousands of litres of illegally-stored chemicals from Victoria have been shipped to South Australia for treatment and disposal, according to SA's Environment Protection Authority (EPA). Key points: Chemicals and items being stored in SA includes aerosol cans South Australia's EPA has approved the arrangement. Victoria's stockpiles have been described as a "significant" problem. The revelations came after the ABC sought details on waste which caught alight at a Veolia facility, a private company that specialises in the treatment, management and disposal of hazardous waste, in Adelaide's north earlier this month. The Victorian waste is being brought into South Australia under an agreement struck between Victoria's EPA and Veolia. PA South Australia chief executive Tony Circelli, said the amount of material recently discovered in illegal stockpiles was beyond Victoria's capacity to manage alone.

Source: ABC News

Fire Engulfs Unit in Sydney: Lithium Battery

A number of residents were evacuated during the night as a fire broke out in a unit on George Street in Waterloo. On arrival, officers located a unit on the 13thfloor well alight. Police assisted in the evacuation of the occupants who were attempting to extinguish the blaze. About 60 residents from levels 12, 13 and 14 were evacuated as a precaution. Early indications suggest it was a lithium battery re-charging, fortunately, it was on the balcony. No reports of any injuries, however some residents and police officers experienced smoke inhalation.

Source: 7News

NSW Legislation Updates

Safework NSW have made amendments to the Work Health and Safety Regulation 2017 which came into effect 15th November 2019 around accommodation for rural workers, explosives, dangerous goods and penalties. Some of the changes:

  • Expanded rules on the Explosives Act 2003 and Regulation 2013
  • Expanded rules on Dangerous Goods (Road and Rail Transport) Act 2008 and Regulation 2014
  • Penalty notices for failing to inform the Regulator about incidents $10,000 individuals and $50,000 companies
  • Fines for not displaying notices issued by inspectors –a prominent position.$5,000 individuals and $25,000 for the company and similar if they are intentionally removed or damaged whilst in force.

Developments in Australian PFAS Class Actions –opinion Clyde & Co

The largest class action in Australia has been announced, with 40,000 people suing the Australian Government for Per-and poly-fluoroalkyl substances (PFAS) contamination. Shine Lawyers, representing the clients, has enlisted the support of American activist, Erin Brockovich. Eight locations in particular are the subject of the class action. Namely: Darwin, NT; Wagga Wagga, NSW; Richmond, NSW; two sites in Townsville, QLD; Bullsbrook, WA; Edinburgh, SA; and Wodonga, VIC[1]. These relate to the sites of several Defence sites with historical use of firefighting foams. In addition to the announced Shine class action, there are also several other class actions already underway in the Federal Court. These class actions relate to the PFAS contamination in Williamstown, NSW, Oakley, QLD and Katherine, NT.

Source: Clyde & Co

W.A. New Management Plans and Templates

The department has released the following management plans and templates for Explosives management plans.

  • Guide for an explosives management plan For all licence types
    • Explosives management plan – Explosives manufacture (MPU) licence – template
    • Explosives management plan – Explosives manufacture licence – template
    • Explosives management plan – Explosives storage licence – template
    • Explosives management plan – Explosives transport licence – template
    • Explosives management plan – Fireworks contractor licence – template

W.A. Dangerous Goods Safety (Major Hazard Facilities) Regulations 2007 -Draft guide

The Department of Mines, Industry Regulation and Safety (DMIRS) is seeking public comment on a draft guide for development and submission of a safety report. The safety report represents the key demonstration by an operator to the government that the operator is aware of the risks associated with their operations and that there is a rigorous system in place to manage those risks. Because of this importance, the effort required by the operator to develop the report and the government to review and approve the report is significant. This document provides guidance to operators of MHFs for the development of safety reports under the Act and the Regulations. Public comment period closes 5.00pm, Friday 14 February 2020.Further information

  • Consultation webpage
  • Dangerous Goods Safety (Major Hazard Facilities) Regulations 2007 – DRAFT guide
  • Public consultation submission coversheet and feedback template

Chemical Spill on Melbourne Freeway

Traffic banked up along a Melbourne freeway as firefighters worked to contain a chemical spill after a trailer flipped. MFB crews were called to the Western Ring Road near Derrimut after the collision. After the crash, a trailer carrying hydrochloric acid flipped onto its side. Firefighters in protective chemical suits are worked to isolate the leak and were expected to be on the scene for some time while the product was cleaned up.


Chemical leaks into Brisbane River from Pinkenba Wharf

About 100 litres of a chemical leaked into the Brisbane River from an on-shore container at Pinkenba Wharf. Emergency services were called after a "slow leak" was discovered, according to the fire service. Firefighters found the leaking valve and contained the spill. Police said the chemical involved was styrene monomer, used in the making of plastics.

Source: Brisbane Times

Gas Leak at Dubbo Hospital Car Park

A gas leak in the car park at Dubbo Base Hospital forced the temporary closure of the area and nearby streets to the public. Emergency services received a call to the area with reports that a car was leaking LPG gas." Firefighters quickly found the gas leak and while attempting to stop the leak, used high pressure water sprays to disperse the gas," Fire and Rescue NSW Dubbo Station Officer Chris Cusack said. “To ensure safety to the public, police were called to keep people away from the area and close Myall Street and Cobbora Road for a short time." Police also assisted with contacting a gas mechanic to assist with stopping the leak. “Station Officer Cusack said it took firefighters around two hours to render the area safe and open the area up again to the public.

Source: Daily Liberal

Workplace exposure standards for airborne contaminants

Safe Work Australia is evaluating the Workplace exposure standards for airborne contaminants to ensure they are based on the highest quality evidence and supported by a rigorous scientific approach. As part of the ongoing review process, Safe Work Australia is seeking public comments of a technical nature on the draft evaluation reports and recommendations for the workplace exposure standards (WES) throughout 2019 and 2020.

Source: Safe Work Australia

Australian Researchers develop Non-flammable Lithium Ion Batteries

Researchers at Deakin University’s Institute for Frontier Materials have found a way to overcome the flammability of lithium-ion batteries. Replacing the volatile liquid electrolyte with a solid polymer material would enable items powered by such batteries, including mobile phones, computers, and vehicles, to no longer be a fire risk.

Source: Australian Manufacturing

Challenges and Opportunities in Industrial Hydrogen Use

A new report from the Commonwealth Scientific and Industrial Research Organisation (CSIRO), has identified industrial processes as one of five key national opportunities for an Australian hydrogen industry. The report laid out the research steps Australia needs to take to realise 7600 jobs and a $11 billion hydrogen industry by 2050.With 23 institutions exploring hydrogen in technology and research areas, and 23 demonstration projects and research facilities around Australia, understanding the capabilities of an Australian industry will direct the growth of a sustainable industry. To get to this goal, however, the CSIRO identified that Australia will have to overcome significant challenges including producing and transporting hydrogen at scale, switching current industrial hydrogen users to clean hydrogen, and to adapt current processes to use hydrogen or a derivative.


The Outlook for Hydrogen Vehicles in Australia

Discussion about developments in alternative vehicle technology have been dominated by the decision of an increasing number of automotive manufacturers to produce electric vehicles which are, in turn, powered by plugging the vehicle into the grid. While this technology is increasingly gaining favour in many international markets, many industry commentators believe that ‘plug-in’ electric vehicles will merely provide a ‘stepping stone’ to the ultimate market adoption of hydrogen powered vehicles.


Paint manufacturer ordered to upskill senior staff in safety

An industrial paint mixing and manufacturing company, MMP Industrial Pty Ltd, was ordered to provide essential safety training to key staff after a worker was seriously burnt during cleaning activities.

MMP Industrial was also fined a total of $75,750 for two breaches of the Work Health and Safety Act 2011.

SafeWork NSW Executive Director, Operations, Tony Williams, said the company was issued orders for the general managers and work health and safety officer to undertake safety training in due diligence, hazardous substances and electrical compliance in hazardous areas.

“These training orders are significant as the judge recognised that a basic lack of safety awareness was what led to an ultimately avoidable situation,” Mr Williams said.

“The risk was foreseeable and straightforward control measures could have been used to prevent the incident. The company was also ordered to develop a work health and safety plan that directs senior staff to implement the lessons learned through training in the workplace,” Mr Williams said.

The worker was using a highly flammable solvent, acetone, to clean a paint mixing vat when a static electrical charge caused a spontaneous ignition of the vapours.

Source: SafeWork NSW

Innovation and Intervention to prevent Workplace Accidents–SafeWork NSW

Construction sites, hazardous chemical facilities and sites with mobile plant equipment are some of the workplaces targeted in a new High-Risk Workplaces Strategy launched by the NSW Government.

The strategy utilises current and historical data to identify risk trends within industries, which will then allow SafeWork to run targeted programs so that there is a better chance of intervening before an incident occurs. Minister for Better Regulation and Innovation Kevin Anderson said the strategy is part of a commitment to reduce fatalities and serious injuries at work.

“The High-Risk Workplaces Strategy is a game changer in the fight to reduce workplace fatalities and serious injuries,” Mr Anderson said. “Using state-of-the-art data science, SafeWork NSW can better identify businesses most at risk of having a workplace incident, and then work with those businesses to remove or reduce the risk before someone gets seriously injured or killed.”

The SafeWork NSW High-Risk Workplaces Strategy uses a predictive model that generates a risk score for each business. When applied against last year’s data, the model has an 80 per cent success rate in predicting whether or not a business will have an incident.“We’ve seen the devastation workplace deaths and serious injury can have on the community, which is why SafeWork NSW continues to find new and innovative ways of addressing unsafe work practices, so that everyone makes it home at the end of their shift,” Mr Anderson said.

SafeWork NSW’s compliance, prevention and regulatory function is guided by the Work Health and Safety Roadmap for NSW 2022.The six-year strategy commits NSW to a 30 per cent reduction in work related fatalities and a 50 per cent reduction in the incidence of serious injuries, illnesses by 2022. To date NSW is exceeding national targets and is the only state to increase its targets.

Source: SafeWork NSW

I hope you find it interesting and if I can assist you with any of your safe storage needs, please call us on 1800 888 714.

Grant Breeze

Customer service (NSW/ACT/VIC/SA/WA) 

Glen Head

Customer service (QLD / NT)