The U.S. Department of Transportation’s Pipeline and Hazardous Materials Safety Administration released the 2016 Emergency Response Guidebook.

The Emergency Response Guidebook provides first responders with an updated go-to manual to help respond to hazardous materials transportation accidents during the critical first minutes. The guide will help emergency personnel identify specific risks associated with compromised hazardous materials and the recommended safety measures and procedures they should take to protect themselves and contain the incident.

The 2016 version of the ERG includes general revisions, expanded sections and added guide pages for absorbed gases. The ERG2016 is available free to public safety agencies in all states, territories and Native American Tribes through designated state emergency management coordinators’ offices.

The ERG contains an indexed list of dangerous goods and the corresponding 4-digit United Nations identification numbers. It also identifies the general hazards associated with the dangerous goods and recommends safety precautions.

Because hazardous materials regulations require carriers to maintain emergency response information in a readily-available location when shipping hazards materials, the ERG is an easy way to comply. Some carriers place the ERG in the vehicle to cover any hazmat situation they need it for rather than having specific solutions for each load.

PHMSA has also partnered with the National Library of Medicine to provide a free smartphone version of the ERG2016. The mobile application will be available this spring. A copy of ERG2016 is posted online here and is available for sale to the general public through the U.S. Government Printing Office Bookstore and other commercial suppliers.