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Some of the very best paid HGV driving jobs you’ll see if you look at job listings, for example on our Job Finder service, are those that involve transporting dangerous goods. This isn’t simply because they come with more risk attached, in theory, than other driving jobs, but because there are extra steps you need to take before you can become a driver who is legally able to carry dangerous goods. Extra care needs to be taken with these kinds of loads because if they were to be involved in any kind of accident during their journey they could cause extreme risk to life and to the environment, so the right training and responsibility is essential.

What is the ADR?

The ADR is short for the European Agreement concerning the International Carriage of Dangerous Goods by Road. This is a set of regulations which must be followed by hauliers transporting toxic, flammable or otherwise dangerous.
Although the ADR has been implemented by most European countries since 1968, it’s updated every two years as the industry, technology and other influencing circumstances change.
Not only does the ADR define who is allowed to transport dangerous goods and how, but it also covers how they are labelled and packaged for the trip, and what kind of vehicle they’re transported in.

ADR training

HGV drivers of most sizes of vehicle, including those under 3.5 tonnes, have to be trained and qualified to a separate set of standards before they can transport dangerous goods. Some exceptions do apply for very small amounts of these goods, but this is very strictly specified.
Completing this training gives you an ADR training certificate, which is the documentation you need before you can legally carry these loads and earn the wages advertised for doing so.

What you need to travel

When you’re transporting dangerous goods, you need to have a transport document with you at all times which contains all the information about exactly what you’re carrying. You also need to have emergency instructions, and your ID with a photo for you and anyone else travelling with you. The emergency instructions are provided by the haulier, and have to be understood by every member of the crew transporting the goods. For some kinds of goods, for example explosives, a separate certificate is needed, and for some types of waste, you’ll also need to register as a waste carrier.

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