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Before You Ship, Check The Box

Before You Ship, Check The Box

Shipping packages containing hazardous materials (hazmat) is tricky because those items can become toxic and explosive if they are handled incorrectly. Additionally, you may not be aware that an item you are shipping is considered hazardous. Every year, there are approximately 1,500 reported incidents involving shipped undeclared hazmat in our transportation system. Annually, about 3 billion tons of regulated hazmat is transported within the United States.     

To raise awareness of the risks of shipping hazmat, the U.S. Department of Transportation’s (USDOT) Pipeline and Hazardous Materials Safety Administration (PHMSA) rolled out the “Check the Box” campaign in August 2018. The program helps shippers identify hazmat and receive guidance on how to safely ship it. PHMSA will continue to release videos, public service announcements, news articles and advertising, reminding shippers to “Check the Box.”

For more information on identifying hazardous materials and how to properly ship them, please visit

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