For ecommerce merchants or manufacturers, ignorance isn’t innocence when it comes to shipping potentially hazardous materials. If a business is sending merchandise through the mail, they should be absolutely sure that they are in compliance with all regulations. Here are 5 ways a qualified third-party-logistics provider (3PL) can help.
Top 5 Benefits of Outsourcing Hazardous Product Fulfillment:
A qualified 3PL can identify a potentially hazardous material and quickly implement the necessary processes to ensure compliance BEFORE there is an issue. Though the U.S. Department of Transportation (DOT) labels a hazardous material as ‘any article or substance that is capable of posing an unreasonable risk to health, safety, and property during transportation’ it isn’t always easy to determine if the product or a component of the product falls under this category. An experienced 3PL will be able to identify if an item or a piece of the item is on the very long hazardous materials list.
Some of the commonly shipped items on the hazardous materials list include:
- Cosmetics (nail polish, hair care products, and perfumes)
- Building supplies (adhesives and paints, varnish, shellac, polish, and lacquer)
- Electronics (appliances and any device that contains fuel or batteries)
- Food and beverages
- Nutraceuticals (supplements or dietary products)
- Medical and healthcare products (iodine, medicinal tinctures, rubbing alcohol, first aid kits, or thermometers and other items containing mercury)
- Alternative wellness products containing certain essential oils or CBD oil
2) Avoid fees and fines.
Non-compliance with hazardous material shipping regulations can be costly. The U.S. Department of Transportation’s Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) proposed a $140,000 fine against a major retailer due to improper shipping-paper declarations for the hazardous materials contained in the 3oz bottles of nail color and 5oz containers of sunblock they were shipping. The nail color should have been classified as a flammable liquid, while the sunblock should have been labeled as a flammable gas. Another example includes the $91,000 fine a leading pharmaceutical distribution company received because they made an undeclared shipment of skincare products containing alcohol. Improper shipping declarations are just one of the mistakes companies can make when shipping dangerous goods. A HAZMAT Shipping Certified 3PL will have a full understanding of hazardous material transportation guidelines, including all special regulations and procedures with which to comply when shipping by air, ground, rail, and sea.
3) It’s cost effective.
A qualified 3PL will have strong internal processes and controls for product handling, fulfillment, and packaging that support requirements, increase efficiencies, and lower overall costs.
4) Focus on the core business.
By outsourcing HAZMAT fulfillment, a company can focus on growing their business.
5) Have peace of mind that products are being shipped safely, and in a manner that’s compliant with all regulations.
A 3PL will impose rigorous training standards for all employees involved in handling dangerous goods, and will also have a quality control process in place to reduce the risk of any packages being shipped out of compliance.
Have concerns about shipping a potentially hazardous product? Consider working with a HAZMAT Shipping Certified 3PL.
LEARN MORE: If you’re looking for a new fulfillment partner, contact the experts at The Jay Group. The Jay Group has been an industry leading 3PL provider since 1965. Today, top companies and ecommerce retailers rely on The Jay Group’s experience, customer focus, and enterprise level technology solutions to deliver the best possible experience to their customers.