Choose a
Different State


Florida CDL Handbook: Hazardous Materials -- Driving and Parking Rules

With the Florida CDL Driver Handbook, you can study up on the issues that specifically relate to earning your CDL endorsement.

Florida CDL Handbook: Hazardous Materials -- Driving and Parking Rules

Table of Contents

9. Hazardous Materials

9.6.1 - Parking with Division 1.1, 1.2, or 1.3 Explosives

Never park with Division 1.1, 1.2, or 1.3 explosives within five feet of the traveled part of the road. Except for short periods of time needed for vehicle operation necessities (e.g., fueling), do not park within 300 feet of:

  • A bridge, tunnel, or building.
  • A place where people gather.
  • An open fire.

If you must park to do your job, do so only briefly.

Don't park on private property unless the owner is aware of the danger. Someone must always watch the parked vehicle. You may let someone else watch it for you only if your vehicle is:

  • On the shipper's property.
  • On the carrier's property.
  • On the consignee's property.

You are allowed to leave your vehicle unattended in a safe haven. A safe haven is an approved place for parking unattended vehicles loaded with explosives. Designation of authorized safe havens is usually made by local authorities.

9.6.2 - Parking a Placarded Vehicle Not Transporting Division 1.1, 1.2, or 1.3 (Class A or B) Explosives

You may park a placarded vehicle (not laden with explosives) within five feet of the traveled part of the road only if your work requires it. Do so only briefly. Someone must always watch the vehicle when parked on a public roadway or shoulder. Do not uncouple a trailer and leave it with hazardous materials on a public street. Do not park within 300 feet of an open fire.

9.6.3 - Attending Parked Vehicles

The person attending a placarded vehicle must:

  • Be in the vehicle, awake, and not in the sleeper berth, or within 100 feet of the vehicle and have it within clear view.
  • Be aware of the hazards of the materials being transported.
  • Know what to do in emergencies.
  • Be able to move the vehicle, if needed.

9.6.4 - No Flares!

You might break down and have to use stopped vehicle signals. Use reflective triangles or red electric lights. Never use burning signals, such as flares or fuses, around a:

  • Tank used for Class 3 (Flammable Liquids) or Division 2.1 (Flammable Gas) whether loaded or empty.
  • Vehicle loaded with Division 1.1, 1.2, or 1.3 Explosives.

9.6.5 - Route Restrictions

Some states and counties require permits to transport hazardous materials or wastes. They may limit the routes you can use. Local rules about routes and permits change often. It is your job as driver to find out if you need permits or must use special routes. Make sure you have all needed papers before starting.

If you work for a carrier, ask your dispatcher about route restrictions or permits. If you are an independent trucker and are planning a new route, check with state agencies where you plan to travel. Some localities prohibit transportation of hazardous materials through tunnels, over bridges, or other roadways. Always check before you start.

Whenever placarded, avoid heavily populated areas, crowds, tunnels, narrow streets, and alleys. Take other routes, even if inconvenient, unless there is no other way. Never drive a placarded vehicle near open fires unless you can safely pass without stopping.

If transporting Division 1.1, 1.2, or 1.3 explosives, you must have a written route plan and follow that plan. Carriers prepare the route plan in advance and give the driver a copy. You may plan the route yourself if you pick up the explosives at a location other than your employer's terminal. Write out the plan in advance. Keep a copy of it with you while transporting the explosives. Deliver shipments of explosives only to authorized persons or leave them in locked rooms designed for explosives storage.

A carrier must choose the safest route to transport placarded radioactive materials. After choosing the route, the carrier must tell the driver about the radioactive materials, and show the route plan.

9.6.6 - No Smoking

Do not smoke within 25 feet of a placarded cargo tank used for Class 3 (flammable liquids) or Division 2.1 (gases). Also, do not smoke or carry a lighted cigarette, cigar, or pipe within 25 feet of any vehicle, which contains:

  • Class 1 (Explosives)
  • Class 3 Flammable Liquids)
  • Class 4 (Flammable Solids)
  • Class 4.2 (Spontaneously Combustible)

9.6.7 - Refuel with Engine Off

Turn off your engine before fueling a motor vehicle containing hazardous materials. Someone must always be at the nozzle, controlling fuel flow.

9.6.8 - 10 B:C Fire Extinguisher

The power unit of placarded vehicles must have a fire extinguisher with a UL rating of 10 B:C or more.

9.6.9 - Check Tires

Make sure your tires are properly inflated. Check placarded vehicles with dual tires at the start of each trip and when you park. You must check the tires each time you stop. The only acceptable way to check tire pressure is to use a tire pressure gauge.

Do not drive with a tire that is leaking or flat except to the nearest safe place to fix it. Remove any overheated tire. Place it a safe distance from your vehicle. Don't drive until you correct the cause of the overheating. Remember to follow the rules about parking and attending placarded vehicles. They apply even when checking, repairing, or replacing tires.

9.6.10 - Where to Keep Shipping Papers and Emergency Response Information

Do not accept a hazardous materials shipment without a properly prepared shipping paper. A shipping paper for hazardous materials must always be easily recognized. Other people must be able to find it quickly after a crash.

  • Clearly distinguish hazardous materials shipping papers from others by tabbing them or keeping them on top of the stack of papers.
  • When you are behind the wheel, keep shipping papers within your reach (with your seat belt on), or in a pouch on the driver's door. They must be easily seen by someone entering the cab.
  • When not behind the wheel, leave shipping papers in the driver's door pouch or on the driver's seat.
  • Emergency response information must be kept in the same location as the shipping paper.
  • Papers for Division 1.1, 1.2 or, 1.3 Explosives.

A carrier must give each driver transporting Division 1.1, 1.2, or 1.3 (Class A or B) explosives a copy of Federal Motor Carrier Safety Regulations (FMCSR), Part 397. The carrier must also give written instructions on what to do if delayed or in an accident. The written instructions must include:

  • The names and telephone numbers of people to contact (including carrier agents or shippers).
  • The nature of the explosives transported.
  • The precautions to take in emergencies such as fires, accidents, or leaks.

Drivers must sign a receipt for these documents. You must be familiar with, and have in your possession while driving, the:

  • Shipping papers.
  • Written emergency instructions.
  • Written route plan.
  • A copy of FMCSR, Part 397.

9.6.11 - Equipment for Chlorine

A driver transporting chlorine in cargo tanks must have an approved gas mask in the vehicle. The driver must also have an emergency kit for controlling leaks in dome cover plate fittings on the cargo tank.

9.6.12 - Stop Before Railroad Crossings

Stop before a railroad crossing if your vehicle:

  • Is placarded.
  • Carries any amount of chlorine.
  • Has cargo tanks, whether loaded or empty used for hazardous materials.

You must stop 15 to 50 feet before the nearest rail. Proceed only when you are sure no train is coming. Don't shift gears while crossing the tracks.

Check out our Customer Reviews!