Xylene is a highly flammable liquid that is often mixed with other agents to produce cleaning chemicals, paint thinner, varnish, fuel and gasoline. Xylene is colorless with a sweet odor. Extreme caution must be taken when handling due to its high toxicity. Xylene is considered a dangerous good (also known as a hazardous material) by the United States Department of Transportation and must follow all established safety and preventive guidelines in order to be transported.
Use the United States Department of Transportation Hazardous Materials Table to locate the proper shipping name of your shipment. Xylene may be referred to by different names by its manufacturer, but for shipping purposes it is referred to as simply Xylene. Write down the UN classification number, the proper shipping name, class, hazard labels needed, and packing group. (UN 1307, Xylene, class 3, flammable label, PG III)
Contact a shipping company, such as FedEx or UPS, and advise them that you will be shipping dangerous goods. Tell them the nature of your shipment, the quantity being shipped and where you will be shipping. You will be required to fill out a form to receive permission to ship dangerous goods if it is your first time shipping.
Follow the packing instructions as indicated in the dangerous goods table. The packaging must be designed so that no hazardous materials are released or spilled during shipping. Use a cushioned inner packing, as well as a sturdy, leak-proof outer packing, and keep the package upright at all times.
Mark and label the package. Attach labels with the complete name, address, contact person and phone number of both the shipping and receiving parties. You will also need a label with the proper shipping name, UN classification number and quantity of Xylene being shipped. A class 3 “Flammable Liquid” label and “This Side Up” label must be secured to the outside of the packaging.
Fill out the shipper’s declaration for dangerous goods and the bill of lading/airway bill. A bill of lading will be used for shipment by ground while an airway bill will be used for shipments by air. Fill out forms completely, sign and keep next to the package to be shipped. Print two copies of the material safety data sheet and keep with shipping documents.
Schedule a pick up from your shipping company or drop off at the closest location. Pay for the shipment and tender the package and freight to the shipping agent. You will be issued a tracking number to monitor the movement of your shipment and you will be notified by email when your package is received.
Do not attempt to ship Xylene unless you are certified to ship Dangerous Goods.
Sean Chappell has been a freelance writer since 2005 and also lived and worked throughout Europe for three years as a certified TEFL teacher. Chappell's work has been published on business blogs such as printerink.com. He has a Bachelor of Arts in English and a minor in journalism/Spanish from Brigham Young University-Hawaii.