As a result of EC Directive 96/35/EC, undertakings involved in the transport and physical loading of dangerous goods have been required to appoint qualified Dangerous Goods Safety Advisers (DGSA) since 1 January 2000. Employers (including the self employed) who load or transport dangerous goods beyond the thresholds laid down in the regulations need to appoint a safety adviser to guide them on the legal, safety and environmental aspects of the transport of dangerous goods.

Chapter of ADR, defines the act.
"Each Undertaking, the activities of which include the carriage, or the related packing, loading, filling or unloading, of dangerous goods by road, shall appoint one or more safety advisers for the carriage of Dangerous Goods, responsible for helping to prevent the risks inherent in such activities, with regard to persons, property and the environment."

ADR DocumentsDuties of the DGSA 
The duties of the DGSA are many fold, which include primarily:-

  • To Advise Companies and persons of the Regulations in ADR as it applies to their specific Operation.
  • To classify and identify the goods that come under the jurisdiction of ADR.
  • To effect the function specific training required.
  • To ensure that all persons are knowledgeable in their own function specific area of work with Dangerous Goods and certificate these persons.

The DGSA will retain records of training and is required:-

  • To advise on emergency measures in place for those parts of the operation that require it, notable spill and accident procedures, and the Personal Protective Equipment required of personnel in that field.
  • To advise on the documentation that must accompany dangerous goods in transport, and to the notification of the status of these goods to those who handle or transport it.

Other duties include:-

  • To advise on the labelling requirements of the dangerous goods.
  • To prepare an annual report to the company on the compliance of the Company and suggest improvements if need be. This document is kept for 5 Years and available to the Competent Authorities.
  • To investigate and write a report on any accident or incident that involves injury or spillage with dangerous goods over a certain level to the company.
  • To verify that all associated parties and subcontractors involved in the dangerous goods are legally capable of doing so.
  • To Audit the company at the initial stages of the appointment, and at the end of the year re Audit the company and write a report to the directors of the company. This letter is to be kept on file for 5 Years and available to the HSE if they see fit.
  • To report to the competent authorities any accident or incident that falls within the requirements of Chapter, requirements of which are similar to the RIDDOR requirements.

This is not an inclusive list but serves as an indication of the duties of a DGSA

The DGSA will have passed an examination, from which he/she will receive a Certificate for 5 Years. After that Time the DGSA will have to re-sit the Examination to renew their certificate.

Further Reading 
As stated elsewhere, ADR is a lengthy and complex subject and requires professionally qualified people to deal with the complexities involved. Please use the link below for further information pertaining to ADR and the role of a DGSA.