Truck and Track Spring 2023 Spring 2023 Truck and Track 15 BUSINESS NEWS A key technology It’s a British scientist, Stanley Whittingham, who has the best claim to be the inventor of the lithium battery. But Exxon, his employer, discontinued the research back in the 1980’s after Professor Whittingham’s early creations kept catching fire. Fast forward four decades and things have come a long way. Lithium batteries are everywhere, especially in consumer electronics, solar and transport - cars, scooters and so on. They are one of the key technologies of the modern world and will only increase in use as we strive for net zero. But they do keep catching fire. And the regulators have noticed. ADR Regulations There’s a large lack of knowledge about the regulation of lithium batteries. Many are sent through non-specialist networks every day in the belief that they don’t fall within ADR, the system for transporting dangerous goods by road. But they absolutely do, and it’s clear in the regulations: if the Li-ion battery has a power rating above 100Wh (Watt-hour) then it’s ADR and will have to go on a full-ADR carrier, with trained driver, orange plates, compliant manifest and all the rest. And if it’s less than 100Wh? Well, it still might be ADR, and you’ll have to check with your DGSA. There’s no excuse for not being aware. What to do? Fortunately, the regulations for lithium batteries are no more onerous than for any other hazardous goods. So if you’re used to handling chemicals, and your transport company is too, then you should have no problems. Get the product details, check with your DGSA, ensure your product supplier is reputable (proper packaging, good housekeeping, etc.), pick an ADR carrier, train your staff, produce the correct paperwork. You’re good to go. “These batteries are helping to move us away from dirtier forms of fuel, however, as technology improves then more power is being stored in smaller devices. There is a risk of fire associated with these batteries and that is the reason that the more powerful items need to be handled by ADR hauliers. We have all seen stories in the news about these fires, and no-one wants to be responsible for one of these due to consigning freight the wrong way,” explained Robert Symes, MD of the Hazchem Network. Safe transport of lithium-ion batteries GB Railfreight raises over £200,000 for Prostate Cancer UK GB Railfreight, one of the fastest growing companies in the rail industry, handed over the final cheque of £200,728 to Prostate Cancer UK at its Charity Handover Event at the Leonardo Royal Hotel in London. In attendance were TV presenter and Prostate Cancer UK Ambassador, Rob Bell and Chairman of Network Rail, Lord Hendy of Richmond Hill. During the partnership, GBRf held a number of fundraising events including a four-day charity charter across the UK rail network which raised over £140,000. Working together with Prostate Cancer UK, a series of events were organised across the country for men to check their risk levels, for a disease which affects one in eight men across the UK.