The International Maritime Dangerous Goods Code also referred to as IMDG Code is an internationally agreed regulation that has been developed by the International Maritime Organization (IMO). This code has been particularly designed to set provisions for the safe transport fir all the dangerous goods that are carried by sea.
The goal of the IMDG code is to accelerate the safe transport of all the dangerous goods that are transported by the sea, thereby protecting the marine environment. There are certain products that are identified and classified as dangerous goods. IMDG training is being provided to the individuals in dealing with such products so that they could be carried away and transported safely by the sea. It is mandatory for all the dangerous goods packaging services to comply with the provisions of the IMDG Code.
IMDG is an internationally adopted code which covers the following things:
· Requirements related to IMDG training
· Classifications of hazardous materials
· Handling instructions for crew members
· Security provisions
· Important marking, codes, and labels.
Different types of dangerous goods:
IMDG code is applied to all the dangerous goods packaging services that carry dangerous goods to the sea for the purpose of shipping them from one place to the other. The dangerous goods labels and dangerous goods certificate for the cargo are issued as per the nine classes:
· Class 1: Explosives
· Class 2: Gases
· Class 3: Flammable liquid
· Class 4: Flammable solid and other flammable substances
· Class 5: Oxidizing substances and organic peroxides
· Class 6: Toxic and infectious substances
· Class 7: Radioactive material
· Class 8: Corrosive substances
· Class 9: Miscellaneous dangerous substances and articles.
Importance of IMDG training and code for seafarers:
All the crew members who are engaged on a ship are directly involved with the dangerous cargo that is carried on to the ship. Thus, it is imperative for them to undergo IMDG training which is based on the requirements of handling these goods carefully. These guidelines are prepared under the guidance of IMO. Several shore-based training centers offer such training to the dangerous good packaging services to handle IMDG cargo, thereby making sure that the dangerous products are being carried safely.
Any seafarer is expected to understand the following points under the IMDG code:
· He/she shall be able to classify dangerous goods and identify the shipping names of such dangerous goods.
· He/she shall understand how a particular IMDG cargo is to be packed.
· He/she shall know about different kinds of markings, placards, and labels that are used to address dangerous goods.
· He/she shall know about the safe practice that is carried out to load/unload the cargo unit which has any IMDG product.
· He/she shall understand all the transport documents which are used in carrying such dangerous goods.
At present, the reach of the International Maritime Dangerous Goods code extends up to a total of 150 countries around the world. There are around 98 percent ships that follow all the rules and requirements of the said code. IMDG code must be followed and fine training must be imparted to all the aspirants in handling dangerous products.