Transportation of Infectious Substances Class 6.2
The transportation of infectious substances within South Africa is regulated by international legislation, to which any company involved in the handling, warehousing or transport of such goods are required to comply.
Below is an overview of the dangerous goods regulations and legislation as it relates to Class 2 infectious substances.
SANS 10228 – Identification and Classification of Dangerous Goods for Transport: Version 5 – 2010
Legislation for the Transportation of Class 6.2: Infectious Substances by Road
188.8.131.52.4 states that all diagnostic or clinical patient specimens, including blood intended for the Blood Transfusion Service shall be packed and transported as a category A infectious substance if the medical history of the donor or any other source is unknown. Only after such a specimen has been tested and declared free of any infectious substance can it be exempt from division 6.2.
As testing of all diagnostic and clinical specimens places an immense burden on pathology labs, 184.108.40.206.4 has been adopted after lengthy discussions at the United Nations Committee of Experts on the Transport of Dangerous Goods. It was decided that a substance can be exempt from division 6.2 on the basis of professional judgement of a qualified medical practitioner taking into account known medical history, symptoms and individual circumstances, and endemic conditions. In such a case the substance shall be transported in packaging that prevents leakage (see 220.127.116.11) and the packaging shall be marked with the words “Exempt human specimen” or “Exempt animal specimen”. The consignment shall also be accompanied by a declaration of the said qualified medical practitioner stating that the consignment is exempt from division 6.2.
Furthermore, 18.104.22.168.2 states that blood or blood components which have been collected from the Blood Transfusion Service for the purpose of transfusion or for the preparation of blood products to be used for transfusion or any tissues or organs intended for use in transplantation are not subject to the requirements of division 6.2.
Note should be taken that the United Nations Committee was explicit that only a qualified medical practitioner be allowed to judge whether a substance is exempt from division 6.2. Judgement by a competent professional person or a laboratory is totally unacceptable.
Emergency Information Systems Class 6.2 Infectious Substances: Placards
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