On August 31, 2016 Korean shipping line Hanjin filed for bankruptcy protection in the Seoul Central District Court and requested the courts to freeze their assets after losing support from banks. They started losing money in 2011 and by 2016 had accumulated 5 billion dollars of debt. The world slowdown in economic activity, the oversupply of larger ships and record low ocean freight rates contributed to the bankruptcy. The Korean government has consider providing funding to keep them operating but as of yet that has not happened. There has been discussion of a merger with Hyundai line but nothing happening there yet either. Hanjin is the 7th largest shipper in the world with 2.9% market share.
The immediate impact on customers of ocean shippers is what was once abundant space availability is now tight or tighter than it was and the implementation of increased freight rates. First to see increases are the spot customers seeing a range of $600 – $800 per 20 foot container in Asia to US routes. There are discussions of additional increases Oct 1 but the market may not accept it as the peak shipping season is nearing an end. Contract shippers have said they are having issues getting space at their contracted rates and discussions for increases are happening.
Another problem is that all containers on Hanjin ships are stranded on Hanjin ships. Ports are not allowing them to enter because there is no assurance the port; unloading and trucker fees would be paid. This is causing problems for retailers awaiting holiday merchandise and any other customers with containers on Hanjin ships. The Hanjin crews are stranded on their ships awaiting some resolution.
We must wait and see how this continues to unfold and will have a more clear understanding as key potential rate increase dates of 10/1 and 10/15 come and go.
No Chem One containers are on Hanjin ships.
We have a new Potassium Hydroxide flake that arrived in September providing a lower cost option. Call for specification and samples.
Late October or early November we have a lower cost Magnesium Sulfate Heptahydrate that we will be offering. We will stock this Epsom Salt for both pallet and truckload requirements.
Copper Sulfate has edged up from the four year low it hit. The price for the copper metal is still trading in a narrow range. Fourth quarter should remain a good time to order Copper Sulfate and also consider looking at December and January needs before the start of 2017 when prices historically move up due to the increases in worldwide manufacturing.
As we enter the fourth quarter managing inventories is a critical cost initiative for most companies. Call Chem One for all your JIT needs and minimize dead stock during this uncertain economic climate.
Zinc Oxide – The zinc market remains the one metal that is bullish on price. If the cost of zinc doesn’t decrease we would see Zinc Sulfate increases in the fourth quarter.
Sodium Hexametaphosphate granular and plate
The following much needed joint guidance document was released to address concerns on labeling for transportation and workplace labeling in regard to the new HCS 2012.
From U.S. DOT (PHMSA) and OSHA;
September 19, 2016
Labeling of Hazardous Chemicals for Bulk Shipments Joint Guidance Memorandum
Prepared by PHMSA’s Office of Hazardous Materials Safety and OSHA Introduction
The U.S. Department of Transportation’s (DOT) Pipeline and Hazardous Materials Safety Administration (PHMSA) and the U.S. Department of Labor’s Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) are responsible for enforcing distinct and separate safety standards that address appropriate labeling of chemical hazards in transportation (PHMSA) and in the workplace1 (OSHA). PHMSA’s labeling requirements are contained in the U.S. Hazardous Materials Regulations (HMR; 49 CFR Parts 100-180) and apply to transportation2 of hazardous materials in commerce. OSHA’s labeling requirements are specific to the workplace and are found in the Hazard Communication Standard (HCS 2012), 29 CFR § 1910.1200. For the purposes of this memorandum, labeling also includes DOT placarding, signs, and other
PHMSA and OSHA are aware of a number of questions from stakeholders concerning the labeling required by each agency. The purpose of this memorandum is to provide clarity on the general applicability of, and overall relationship between, DOT’s labeling requirements under the HMR and OSHA’s labeling requirements for bulk shipments under the HCS 2012.
DOT HMR Labeling Requirements
DOT’s HMR requires labeling to be displayed or provided with a shipment during transportation in commerce. The HMR provides a comprehensive labeling system to communicate to personnel involved in the transportation of hazardous materials, including emergency responders and the general public, the potential dangers of handling packages containing hazardous materials or a sudden uncontrolled release of hazardous materials during transportation. During transportation, DOT’s HMR governs hazard communication labeling requirements. OSHA’s
HCS 2012 labeling is not required on shipping containers in transport, even when DOT’s HMR does not require labeling in transportation.
1 Workplace means an establishment, jobsite, or project, at one geographical location containing one or more work areas. A work area means a room or defined space in a workplace where hazardous chemicals are produced or used, and where employees are present.
2 Transportation means the movement of property and loading, unloading, or storage incidental to the movement (see 49 CFR § 107.1). Loading, unloading, and storage incidental to movement are defined in 49 CFR § 171.8.
OSHA HCS 2012 Labeling Requirements for Bulk Shipments in DOT Containers (e.g., tanker trucks, rail cars)
OSHA’s HCS 2012 requires labeling of hazardous chemicals in the workplace, both before and after transportation in commerce. OSHA requires labeling on the immediate container of hazardous chemicals. Regarding bulk shipments of hazardous chemicals, the HCS 2012 requires either labeling the immediate container with hazard information or transmitting the required label with shipping papers, bills of lading, or by other technological or electronic means so that it is immediately available to workers in printed form on the receiving end of a shipment. The OSHA HCS 2012 requirements for shipped material apply independently of whether the same material is subject to HMR labeling requirements during transportation.
Note on Bulk Shipments Bearing Both DOT and OSHA HCS 2012 Labels
The HMR prohibits the display on a package of any marking or label that could be confused or conflict with a label required by the HMR. Specifically, 49 CFR § 172.401(b) states:
“No person may offer for transportation and no carrier may transport a package bearing any marking or label which by its color, design, or shape could be confused with or conflict with a label prescribed by this part.”
However, the prohibition in 49 CFR § 172.401(b) does not apply to packages labeled in conformance with certain international standards, including the UN Globally Harmonized System of Classification and Labeling of Chemicals (GHS) (see 49 CFR § 172.401(c)). The provisions of 49 CFR § 172.401(c) apply only to labeling in accordance with the GHS, and subsequently in accordance with OSHA 29 CFR § 1910.1200(f). The GHS labeling provisions, including as implemented by OSHA, require all hazard communication elements to be located on the label and these hazard communication elements must only appear as part of a complete GHS label. As such, the display of a marking or label not required by DOT’s HMR, but conforming to OSHA’s HCS 2012 and consistent with the GHS is not a violation of the HMR. This includes packages meeting the definition of a “bulk package” as defined by the HMR. In other words, an HCS 2012-compliant OSHA label and a DOT HMR label or marking may both appear on the same package.
Note: The DOT and OSHA are aware of some examples of pictograms/symbols displayed on bulk packages that are not consistent with the HCS (29 CFR § 1910.1200) and that are not compliant with hazard communication required by the HMR (49 CFR Parts 100-180). Such labeling is prohibited by the HMR.