A short Overview

Goods classes

Dangerous goods are divided into 13 dangerous goods classes. The goods concerned are determined in the international agreements. They regulate the marking of the dangerous goods, among others:

  • UN number
  • Orange plates (hazard signs)
  • Danger labels and placards

Carriage authorisation and exemptions

The Dangerous Goods Department at the BMK is responsible for this. Applications can be sent by email to st3@bmk.gv.at. A form in English (PDF, 372 KB) is available on the website for exemptions in aviation. The Federal Ministry must also be notified for certain transport of radioactive material.
The respective state police headquarters is responsible in the case of explosive articles and substances, according to the Explosives Act (Sprengmittelgesetz, abbr. SprG). The Federal Ministry of the Interior is responsible for the authorisation of the import, export and transit of war material.

Dangerous Goods in Air Transport

Transport of dangerous goods through tunnels

On the basis of the Road Traffic Regulations (Straßenverkehrsordnung, abbr. StVO), the carriage of dangerous goods is restricted on certain tunnel sections. In this regard, a distinction is made between two types of tunnels, "A" from 1,000 to below 5,000 metres and "B" above 5,000 metres. For example, orange warning lights are required. In the case of high-risk transport units concerned, i.e. transport with a UN number and Kemler Code, at least one escort vehicle is required in tunnels with a length of more than 5,000 metres.

Tunnel Regulations

Written instructions for accidents and emergencies

In the case of carriage by road, the drivers usually have to carry written instructions with them that contain behavioural guidelines for accidents and emergencies. The instructions can be downloaded in various languages on the website of the United Nations Economic Commission for Europe.

Carriage of damaged vehicles or vehicles that have been involved in accidents

Special regulations also apply for damaged electric vehicles. In the assessment, a distinction is to be made between two types of damage, depending on whether the battery is damaged or not. In some cases, damage remains uncertain, as it cannot be checked immediately. Depending on the vehicle that has been involved in an accident, safe removal of the battery can also be possible. Measures are to be taken that prevent the contents being released under normal conditions of carriage.

Training courses for drivers of transport of dangerous goods

Drivers of vehicles with which dangerous goods are transported require appropriate training. If an exemption cannot be used for the carriage, the drivers must carry a valid training certificate with them.

Private transport

The dangerous goods regulations do not apply to the carriage of dangerous goods by road by private individuals. In this regard, these goods must be packaged for retail sale and intended for personal or domestic use or for leisure or sport. In addition, measures must be taken to prevent the release of the contents under normal conditions of carriage.

If flammable liquids are placed in refillable containers, for example buying petrol for the lawnmower at the garage, no more than 60 litres per container and 240 litres per transport unit may be transported. This refers to a motor vehicle and a trailer.

Special provisions apply for carriage as hand luggage or registered luggage by train or aeroplane. The conditions of carriage of the transport companies concerned occasionally provide additional restrictions. These are mostly indicated on the tickets or on the online booking.

Safety adviser

Companies that ship, carry, fill, pack, load or unload dangerous goods require specially-trained safety advisers. After attendance of training has been completed and a written examination has been passed, a training certificate is issued. The examination is developed by the Federal Ministry according to a questionnaire for the respective mode of transport and supervised by special examination experts.

The registered safety advisers do not have to be employees of the company. According to the international regulations, safety advisers with valid foreign training certificates can also be registered.