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  • Any person or organisation shipping or handling dangerous goods for any reason should be able to clearly identify DG using the appropriate labelling.
  • The hazardous material contained within the packaging defines the labelling required.
  • Labelling should be easy to read and clearly visible on the outermost outer packing or overpacking, and should be affixed on the side/top of the carton, ideally near the shipping label.
  • Mixed or consolidated packages of more than one type of hazardous material must contain proper labelling for each type of dangerous goods. NEVER mix or consolidate hazardous materials into a single package that might react with each other in any way.
  • For storage: If at all possible, cartons containing DG should be stored in a manner that makes them easy to access and identify, meaning that the labels should remain visible at all times.
  • For transport: If DG containers are palletised, pallets containing DG items should also be clearly labelled on the outside of the pallet wrapping or binding.
  • For transport: Each label type must meet the size and colour requirements defined by ICAO and IATA, IMO, or other regulatory body relevant to the mode of transpirationtransportation.

UN Number – Cartons or containers used for transporting DG items should clearly indicate the correct corresponding UN number.


The IMO “Dangerous Goods Declaration” (DGD) is a standard, industry wide excepted accepted form for properly declaring dangerous goods as they are loaded onto a seaborne vessel. DGDs should be submitted with regular paperwork – such as a packing list – as well as being stored alongside the DG cargo itself. DGDs may not be the only dangerous goods declaration forms used by transporters – some shipping lines maintain their own DG declaration standards, especially if they operate using domestic inland waterways. Irrespective of the form used, DGDs must be filled out and signed by someone who is fully authorised and authorised and certified to do so.

Surface Transport



Common Issues

Example Item

Possible UN IDs


  • Depending on battery type, may be banned or have limited capability to transport on commercial aircraft.
  • Some battery types are refillable, and may leak harming handlers or reacting to nearby objects or substances.
  • Damaged or swollen batteries are forbidden in air transport.

Lithium ion

UN3480, UN3481

Lithium metal



Sealed lead acid

UN3028, UN2800, UN3090

Refillable lead acid

UN2794, UN3171

Biological Hazards

  • Heavily restricted on some forms of transport.
  • May require specialised documentation. Requires specialised storage.

Blood/medical samples


Live infectious substances

UN2814, UN2900

Medical waste


Water Purification

  • Different size packaging may be restricted for different modes of transport.
  • Keep away of products bearing the 4.3 hazard label.


UN1908, UN1748



Cleaning Agents

  • If packaging is compromised, may irritate or harm persons handling them.
  • May react to objects and substances stored nearby, causing slow damage or violent energetic reactions.
  • Shade and good ventilation is necessary.
  • When a large quantity must be stored or stowed, if possible, separate in smaller storing quantities.
  • Keep away from products bearing the class 3, division 4.2 hazard labels and in general from any flammable products.

HTH Calcium HypochrloiteHypochlorite

UN1748, UN2208, UN2880

Alcohol bases hand sanitiser


Chlorine based cleaning solutions

UN1017, UN1908

Compressed gas

  • Compressed gas cylinders are considered DG even when completely depressurised or empty when transported by air.
  • Compressed gas cylinders may rupture, when stored for long periods of time, or in an unsafe manner.


UN1002, UN1702

Fire extinguisher



UN1978, UN1995 

Liquid Fuel

  • Highly combustible depending on the type.
  • Fuel is often inappropriately stored in a high temperature or unventilated rooms, or centrally located in a warehouse.
  • Shade and good ventilation is necessary.
  • Keep away from substances bearing the division 5.1 hazard label.

Diesel / Gas oil






Aviation Fuel/A-1 jet fuel


Mechanical Equipment and Fluids

  • Vehicles and generators can be considered DG for air shipping because they contain fuel or other potentially hazardous fluids, all of which usually must be below a minimum level or completely drained before transporting in an air craft or sea shipping container.


UN3166, UN3171, UN1202, UN2800


UN3528, UN3529, UN3530, UN3166



Oxygen GeneratorUN3356


UN2857, UN3159







Chemical FertilizesFertilizers

  • May be highly explosive depending on chemical composition.
  • Storage in high temperature, lowly ventilated areas, or near other reactive substances might cause serious harm.


Building Related materials

  • Require proper declaration and documentation for most forms of transport, and is often highly regulated by air transport






UN1950, UN1263