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Hazardous Material Classes

Hazardous Material Classes

There are nine different classes of hazardous materials that tell us what those dangers are for a given type.

When you’re handling hazardous materials, it is essential that you know exactly what you are dealing with and the risks involved. By definition, hazardous materials are extremely dangerous, but there are nine different classes of hazardous materials that tell us what those dangers are for a given type.


Class 1 is explosives. These materials are some of the most destructive that you encounter and must be handled with the utmost care. These materials will produce smoke, heat, light, sound, gas, and smoke, any of which can harm anyone who is nearby if an explosion occurs. Despite what movies and television shows may have you thinking, not every explosion involves a huge fireball that engulfs everything in its path. Some explosions don’t involve fire at all. It is simply a concussive blast of superheated gas that pushes down whatever it encounters.


Class 2 materials are compressed gases, which many of us encounter in our daily lives, often without realizing it. Compressed gases are further categorized on whether they are flammable or non-flammable and whether they are poisonous or not. Gases can fuel and quickly accelerate fires out of control and cause a significant choking hazard.


Class 5 is oxidizers or materials that can produce oxygen. While this may seem like a good thing, oxidizers are actually highly flammable. Oxygen fuels fires, so having an oxidizer anywhere near a flame is extremely dangerous.


Class 8 refers to corrosive materials that can eat through or melt away their containers or other materials that they touch. Any materials with a pH level lower than 2 (highly acidic) or above 12.5 (highly basic) are considered to be corrosives.


Class 9 deals with miscellaneous dangerous goods. These are types of hazardous materials that defy easy classification and don’t fit into any single category. These materials still pose significant risks.  Any substances that need to be kept hot while in transport also count as class 9 hazardous material. Anything magnetized, containing microorganisms, and dangerous substances that can’t be transported on an airplane all fall into this category as well.


No matter what kind of environmental issue you may have, AEG Environmental can help. We handle every situation with care, dedication, and a commitment to exemplary customer service. When you have an emergency, you can rely on us! Need training? We can handle that too! We train in a wide variety of environmental management areas so that your company can remain compliant with EPA, DOT, and OSHA. Make sure to check out our blog for the latest and greatest in the waste management world! You should also follow us on social media for updates.

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This entry was posted on Friday, April 19th, 2019 at 2:36 pm. Both comments and pings are currently closed.

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