Video module training and meetings
Agricultural companies of all sizes need to continuously address having the latest training resources and involvement in setting direction for safety matters.
Materials and resources are available through various companies and organizations, many of them associated with the National Agronomic Environmental Health and Safety School (NAEHSS), such as the Agricultural Retailers Association (ARA), Asmark Institute and Purdue University, which have contributed to the school’s programs almost annually in recent years.
One group outside of NAEHSS specifically for crop protection distributors and manufacturer companies serving Midwestern states is the Mid America CropLife Association (MACA), and it has produced a training module of Department of Transportation HAZMAT Training Videos in DVD format.
The video module of four separate videos is specific to handling hazardous chemicals used in the agricultural “arena,” notes Bonnie McCarvel, executive director of MACA. “We updated previous video materials with a lot of new footage and information. The updating work was done by the MACA Distribution and Environment Committee members,” she explained.
“The information is definitely pertinent for agricultural workers and truck drivers of agricultural retail operations,” McCarvel said. “The video training module qualifies to be used for the DOT General Awareness-Function Specific training.”
Copyrighted videos' focus
- Hazardous Materials General Awareness. This video begins by explaining all the materials handled by agricultural companies that fit into the DOT classification of hazardous materials, including flammable liquids, corrosive materials, oxidizers, toxic substances, miscellaneous hazards, flammable gas, non-flammable compressed gas, toxic gas and substances outside those areas simply classified as regulated materials. (25 minutes)
- Hazardous Materials Shipping Papers. Shipping papers are normally referred to as bills of lading or manifests, and there are a lot of regulations related to retention requirements and properly filling out these papers. (12 minutes)
- Hazardous Materials Loading, Blocking, Bracing. The video title is quite self-descriptive in terms of how to load and keep materials secure, which is pertinent to all types of truck loading, not just hazardous materials. (10 minutes)
- Hazardous Materials Emergency. This training is specific to what a driver and/or agricultural worker should do for the proper response to an “incident.” Appropriate steps to follow are mandated for a company to be in compliance with various regulations. (16 minutes)
The four DVD videos are sold as a module kit and include a CD with "How to Conduct HAZMAT Training," sample certificates and wallet cards. All the details are at www.maca.org, and McCarvel’s office is 800-625-2767.
NH3 Safety Training Materials
ARA has also been offering training in the form of printed manuals and videos. Safe handling of anhydrous ammonia is a current topic of a printed manual and DVD. As we know, regulations related to NH3 equipment changes often, but year to year, safe handling requirements of working around NH3 remains relatively the same.
"Anhydrous ammonia is a vital component of providing crop nutrients to agriculture, whether direct-applied as ammonia or used as a feedstock to create other nitrogen formulations. But it also must be handled safely and kept secure," said Daren Coppock, ARA’s president and chief executive officer. "ARA's NH3 manual provides useful and practical best practices for handling this product safely; it is a great resource for anyone whose responsibilities include ammonia handling."
As explained on ARA's new Web site, www.aradc.org, the association made arrangements to reproduce the safety training program that shows the correct procedures for the safe handling of NH3. The program was originally developed by Regulatory Consultants Inc.
This program is available at relatively low cost, especially considering the negatives that could occur with any type of NH3 incident. Completion of the training course can help individuals meet the state and federal training regulations required for handling and use of NH3.
An order for the training manual and video can be placed by contacting ARA at 202-457-0825.
Security Summit Participation
In addition to training programs, another aspect of keeping abreast of safety and operation requirements is participating in meetings such as the annual safety school held each year in conjunction with the Midwest Ag Industries Exposition (MAGIE) plus other educational programs, some of them government organized.
One such government meeting planned for July 6-7 is the 2011 Chemical Sector Security Summit plus pre-summit demonstrations on July 5 and post-summit workshops on July 8 at Baltimore, Md. Participation is highly limited, and spots are filling fast from all indications, even though no more than two people per organization, company or agency can register. There is a large pool of potential registrants because this is a national meeting and registration is free. Hopefully, not all spots will be filled by the time you are reading this announcement.
ARA and the organizers see the summit as a good fit for ag retailers with employees dedicated to aspects of corporate and facility security; environment, regulatory, health and safety issues; and transportation and distribution of chemical products. More than 400 representatives of the "chemical stakeholder community" attended the 2010 summit.
The event's co-sponsors are the Chemical Sector-Specific Agency within the Department of Homeland Security Office of Infrastructure Protection and the Chemical Sector Coordinating Council.
View the preliminary summit agenda and registration information.
ARA staff will be at the summit and will report on some of the latest security developments, but, of course, this won't be the same as being at the summit.