HAZMAT Trucking | What’s it all About?
HAZMAT Trucking | What's it all About? - AllTruckJobs.com

HAZMAT Trucking | What’s it all About?

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If you’re a truck driver, there’s a good chance that you know about HAZMAT trucking. From flammable gases to nuclear waste, hazardous materials are abundant in the country. However, few truck drivers actually have their HAZMAT endorsement. Sometimes, truckers wonder if hauling hazardous materials is worth their while. Keep reading to find out more about HAZMAT trucking and why it’s so important!

The Importance of HAZMAT Trucking

What is a HAZMAT truck driver?

HAZMAT truckers are drivers who transport hazardous materials from place to place. The Institute of Hazardous Materials Management (IHMM) defines a hazardous material as “any item or agent…which has the potential to cause harm to humans, animals, or the environment, either by itself or through interaction with other factors.” This includes items like:

  • Explosives
  • Corrosive materials
  • Gases
  • Flammable or combustible liquids and solids
  • Radioactive materials
  • Poisons
  • Oxidizing substances

HAZMAT trucking 2

HAZMAT truckers are typically experienced drivers who have proper training in handling and delivering toxic items. These truckers must not only transport the material, but they also need to carefully monitor their routes and practice proper safety at all times. Some hazardous materials are time sensitive, so HAZMAT truckers sometimes must adjust their routes based on traffic and road conditions to make sure their goods get to the destination in time.

How do you become a HAZMAT truck driver?

Since HAZMAT trucking is much more dangerous than hauling standard goods, a regular CDL isn’t enough to be able to haul hazardous materials. So, truckers must obtain a HAZMAT endorsement (code H) before they are certified to haul HAZMAT. To do this, drivers must complete an application and pass a HAZMAT knowledge test. Since there is a high demand for HAZMAT truckers, many companies are willing to pay for drivers to become HAZMAT certified.

Sometimes, however, there’s another step in the process. Many hazardous materials are transported in tankers, and drivers must obtain a tanker endorsement (code N), which requires a separate knowledge test. Fortunately, truckers have the option to earn their HAZMAT and tanker endorsements at the same time and obtain an “X” endorsement.

HAZMAT trucking

Benefits of HAZMAT Trucking

One of the biggest benefits of HAZMAT trucking is the salary. As of 2018, the average base pay for a HAZMAT tanker driver was around $50,000. By getting their hazmat and/or tanker CDL endorsements, truckers have the ability to make even more money in the trucking profession. In fact, HAZMAT transportation is one of the highest-paying careers in the trucking industry. Aside from the salary, the job outlook for HAZMAT truck drivers is promising. The BLS predicts a 17 percent employment growth by 2026, which is much faster than the average for other occupations. Truckers with HAZMAT and tanker endorsements have a wide variety of options when finding a trucking job. Even better, having the endorsements often helps drivers stand apart from others when applying for jobs.

Tips for Success in HAZMAT Trucking

Being a HAZMAT truck driver is not a walk in the park, and it takes a lot of attention to detail. First and foremost, it’s important to know the laws, regulations, and safety risks that come with being a HAZMAT truck driver. Roads and highways can be just as dangerous as the goods you’re transporting, so it’s crucial for HAZMAT truckers to be fully aware of the task at hand. From there, having a successful HAZMAT truck driving career is all about dedication to the job. As the saying goes, you get what you give. Truckers with an eagerness to continuously learn and practice safe driving techniques should have no problem having a rewarding and lucrative HAZMAT trucking career.

What are your thoughts on pursuing a HAZMAT truck driving career? Do you think it’s worth the while? Share your thoughts in the comments below!

Author: Hit The Road Jack

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    • I’ve been driving tankers 3-1/2 mos. now and I can say that it’s not the easiest nor safest, esp. during the rain, steep grades, curves, mountain driving. I recall the first time I felt the surge in a curve and did a bump test was horrifying. I have such respect for the chemicals and my driving skill set is improving more and more as I haul my tanker, it is not for the faint at heart.

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  1. Yes it is worth it. The only drivers that think its not worth it Is those driver that not educated on hazmat. Hazmat drivers are some of the highest paid in trucking. And it opens up more lanes. When it is slow in certain areas.

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  2. My name is Elamin Moore and yes I have my hazmit/tanker endorsement, twic card p,passport card ,permit to carry firearms. And I driver for McFarland truck line out of austin Minnesota it will be three years February 21,2020 single no kids and no hiv or aids no STDs. Yes I can pass drug test, hair test ,just not knowing what’s going on are the grovement going to putted all people with hazmit/tanker endorsement in different company that can cause of the truck drivers that are leaving trucking just asking .so anyway just gotting my back hazmit/tanker endorsement back in 2018 I had to retake my fingerprint background check FBI investigation, homeland security this is my second time having them and get my twic card again cause it was misplaced when I was with Taylor truck line in north field Minnesota will I them back from lated year .my truck number 1320 McFarland truck line into if I have to go to different company will god great peace

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  3. My drivers make over $100000 a year hauling crude oil from gas wells locally, home every day. It isn’t a scary job, you just have to be careful and the job requires very little physical work but there is a lot of things to think about. I call it the big leagues of trucking.

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    • I would love to work for that kinda money I am currently hazmat tanker driver going on second year an otr I gross around 60000 grand a year but barely get home time if you are looking for driver give me a call 9125368827

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    • hello are you still in the hazmat business? if so can you call me thanks Veronica 972)922-7174 I would love to ask you a question

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    • I like money, let’s chat

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  4. Is there any chance i can drive in the usa? I’ve been driving for 14 years in Holland europe. The last 10 years i’ve been driving LPG ( flammable gasses) and still going on. Driving a big rig in the states would be the ultimate challenge and goal for me.

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    • You would have to get licensed to drive in the states. You may still need to attend trucking school here to learn different traffic signs and patterns. I’d talk to a local school and see what they say!

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