Pretoria - The Railway Safety Regulator (RSR) and Chemical and Allied Industries' Association (CAIA) are to sign a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) to help improve rail safety.
"The MoU is aimed at formalising a working relationship in order to enhance safety within the railway environment with particular emphasis on dangerous goods transportation," the RSR said in a statement.
Dangerous goods are commodities, substances and goods that have the potential to pose a signi?cant risk to health and safety, property and the environment if not managed properly.
These dangerous goods, according to RSR are categorised into 9 different classes including explosives, gases, flammable substances, infectious substances, radioactive materials and acids.
In most cases these dangerous goods would be manufactured, imported or exported by a CAIA member before it being transported by road or rail.
The areas of co-operation will include information sharing in relation to legal requirements, provision of technical support and advice specifically on chemicals, their composition and related hazards.
The MoU will also allow the two to research developments on issues concerning approaches to improve the safe transportation of dangerous goods by rail such as measures to improve packaging.
"The strengthening of the relationship between the RSR and CAIA by the conclusion of this MoU will promote safety when dangerous goods are transport by rail and consequently lead to the reduction of occurrences," explained RSR.
CAIA Members are the main role players, who are required to comply with specific responsibilities when dangerous goods are transported by rail. These include, among others, suitable packaging, handling and loading.
The deal will be signed on Thursday by RSR Chief Executive Officer Mosenngwa Mofi and CAIA Executive Director Dr Laurraine Lotter.