Cooperative Hazardous Materials Enforcement Development (COHMED)
The Cooperative Hazardous Materials Enforcement Development (COHMED) Program is an outreach activity of the Commercial Vehicle Safety Alliance.The program fosters coordination, cooperation and communication between federal, state and local agencies with the regulatory and enforcement responsibility for the safe transportation of hazardous materials and the industry they regulate.
COHMED was initiated in 1986 by the states, the U.S. Department of Transportation, and the Research and Special Programs Administration (RSPA), which is now known as the Pipeline and Hazardous Materials Safety Administration (PHMSA). COHMED is comprised of federal, state and local agencies, and industry from the United States and Canada. COHMED works cooperatively with other federal and state agencies, enforcement personnel, emergency planning managers, responders, academic institutions, interest groups and private industry. COHMED is committed to:
- Improving hazardous materials transportation safety
- Fostering national uniformity in regulation and enforcement
- Sharing information on hazardous materials transportation issues and delivery of services
- Providing technical assistance, training and education to states and local governments to enhance existing programs and develop new ones to improve hazardous materials safety
Hazardous materials present unique challenges to enforcement personnel and emergency responders. Effective preparedness and mitigation are fundamental to the reduction of exposure to the population and response forces. COHMED provides the advanced hazardous materials training that regulatory and enforcement officers need. This training goes significantly beyond basic hazardous materials training officers receive for certification purposes. Many jurisdictions send their hazardous materials specialists and/or instructors to receive COHMED training. It is also a great opportunity to meet industry partners, network, build better working relationships and provide input into future changes and regulations.
The next COHMED Conference will take place January 25-29, 2016 in San Antonio, Texas.
The COHMED Conference:
- Offers focused hazardous materials training specific to both law enforcement and industry
- Provides training classes to help industry understand how to comply with regulations when traveling into Canada
- Provides a conduit for industry to present concerns/perspective about the enforcement of regulations
- Offers hands-on class experience thanks to the companies that provide equipment during training