Regulation, enforcement and safety community gathered to discuss and address the unique challenges of the hazmat industry.
Approximately 200 representatives from hazardous materials (hazmat) and hazmat-related industries attended the Cooperative Hazardous Materials Enforcement Development (COHMED) Conference, an annual one-of-kind, week-long event where federal, state and local agencies responsible for regulating and enforcing the safe transportation of hazardous materials/dangerous goods participate in advanced-level technical sessions and in-depth training workshops.
The COHMED Conference took place on Jan. 25-29, 2016, in San Antonio, Texas, and is a five-day informational and training event hosted by the Commercial Vehicle Safety Alliance (CVSA).
Representatives from federal, provincial and state agencies, hazardous materials specialists and instructors, enforcement personnel, emergency planning managers, manufacturers of hazardous materials, first responders, trucking companies, academics, interest groups and private industry attended the conference to receive advanced training on highly specialized topics, present and discuss concerns related to regulations and enforcement, and share perspectives and provide input into future changes and regulations.
“The transportation, inspection, enforcement and emergency response to hazardous materials/dangerous goods present unique01 challenges,” said CVSA President Maj. Jay Thompson with the Arkansas Highway Police. “The COHMED Conference provides the advanced hazmat training that regulatory and enforcement officers need to safely navigate the processes and procedures when dealing with hazardous materials.”
The 2016 COHMED Conference featured informative and collaborative sessions on some of the most important topics related to the hazmat industry, such as:
- Hands-on cylinder, medical and industrial inspection training
- Regulatory updates from Transport Canada, the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration and the Pipeline and Hazardous Materials Safety Administration
- Explosives used during fracking processes
- Transportation and inspection requirements for Ebola
- International regulatory harmonization
- Electronic shipping papers
The 2017 COHMED Conference is scheduled for Jan. 23-27, 2017, in Savannah, Georgia.
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.