Changes For Dangerous Goods and Hazardous Chemicals

Stellina Popplewell

The next version (7.7) of the Australian Dangerous Good Code is being drafted to align with Revision 21 of the United Nations (UN) Model Regulations and incorporates changes adopted by the UN along with other Australian-specific changes.

The key changes aim to: 

1. simplify the requirements relating to the transport of dangerous goods in limited quantities by removing the Australian-specific sub-categories and aligning with the International agreement for the Transport of Dangerous Goods by Road and Rail; 

2. provide a more consistent practice for Australian manufacturers by removing the additional requirements that only apply to inner packaging filled in Australia.

At their meeting in November 2019, Safe Work Australia Members agreed to adopt the Globally Harmonized System of Classification and Labelling of Chemicals (GHS) Revision 7 under the model WHS laws for workplace hazardous chemicals.

This will ensure Australia’s requirements for the classification and labelling of workplace hazardous chemicals remain best practice and are aligned with our key international trading partners in chemicals.

They are working towards adopting GHS Revision 7 under the model WHS laws from 1 July 2020, with a two-year transition period for manufacturers and importers. The two-year time frame will allow manufacturers and importers time to prepare new classifications, labels and safety data sheets for hazardous chemicals to meet GHS Revision 7 requirements.

Suppliers and users of hazardous chemicals will not be affected by the move to GHS Revision 7 and will be able to continue to supply and use chemicals classified and labelled under GHS Revision 3 until their stocks run out.