More than 200 representatives from the hazardous materials (hazmat) community attended the Cooperative Hazardous Materials Enforcement Development (COHMED) Conference, an annual conference where the federal, state, provincial, territorial and local agencies responsible for regulating and enforcing the safe transportation of hazardous materials and dangerous goods, along with a number of industry stakeholders, participate in advanced-level technical sessions and in-depth training workshops.
The COHMED Conference took place Jan. 23-27, 2017, in Savannah, Georgia, and is a five-day informational and training event hosted by the Commercial Vehicle Safety Alliance (CVSA).
Representatives from federal, local, provincial, territorial and state agencies, hazardous materials specialists and instructors, enforcement personnel, emergency planning managers, manufacturers of hazardous materials, first responders, trucking companies and associations, academics, interest groups and private industry attended the COHMED Conference to receive progressive training on highly specialized issues, discuss and address concerns related to hazmat and dangerous goods regulations and enforcement, share perspectives and provide input into future changes and regulations.
“Hazardous materials and dangerous goods are transported every day throughout North America and it’s our job to ensure those materials are transported safely, ensuring public and environmental safety and peace of mind,” said CVSA President Julius Debuschewitz of Yukon Highways and Public Works. “The COHMED Conference is a unique opportunity to gather hazmat experts to discuss and address current issues and future challenges, and to further train and prepare industry, enforcement personnel and emergency responders on the safe transportation of hazardous materials.”
Attendees received regulatory updates from Transport Canada, and the U.S. Department of Transportation’s Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA) and the Pipeline and Hazardous Materials Safety Administration (PHMSA). The 2017 COHMED Conference also featured informative and collaborative sessions on some of the most important topics related to the hazmat industry, such as:
- Reverse logistics and the safe transportation of fireworks and lithium batteries
- Materials of trade/agricultural issues
- Counterterrorism operations support
- Differences and similarities between Canadian versus U.S. cargo tanks
- The top five DataQ violations
- Organic peroxides, intermodal tanks and 406 and 407 highway tanks
- Updates to the hazmat out-of-service criteria
The 2018 COHMED Conference is scheduled for Jan. 29-Feb. 2, 2018, in Garden Grove, California.