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ADR Plates, ADR Panels, Hazchem Labels & Vehicle Marking


ADR Plates, ADR Panels, Hazchem Labels & Vehicle Marking

ADR/CDG Regulations

The transport of dangerous goods in the UK is regulated by the Carriage of Dangerous Goods regulations (CDG regs) and the European agreement (“Accord européen relatif au transport international des marchandises dangereuses par route”) otherwise known as ADR.

In the UK, the Hazchem Emergency Action Codes (EAC) must be used. This system of marking must not be confused or combined with international ADR marking, which uses Hazard Identification Numbers (HIN), also known as the Kemler/Kemmler Code, which all other vehicles must use.

The Emergency Action Code (EAC)

Emergency Action Codes (EACs), also known as Hazchem codes, are a three character code that must be displayed on all GB registered road and rail vehicles that carry dangerous goods on domestic journeys within the UK. 

The panel below shows the EAC in the top section and the UN Number (which identifies the substance) at the bottom.

ADR Plate ADR Panel Hazchem

EACs provide a quick assessment to the emergency services of what actions should be taken during and accident. The fire and police services use the specific characters and numbers to determine which actions may be necessary, during the first few minutes of an incident involving dangerous goods.

EAC's are characterised by a single number (1 to 4) and either one or two letters (depending on the hazard). 

The AEC is interpreted by the Emergency Action Code pocket cards, the latest version of which is shown below.

EAC emergency action code hazchem code

ADR HI Numbers  

The ADR Hazard Identification Number HIN, also known as the Kemler Code, is carried on road and rail vehicles with tanks etc carrying bulk loads of dangerous substances.

The panel below shows the HI Number in the top section and the UN number (which identifies the substance) at the bottom.

ADR panel ADR Plate Hazchem 2

The HI number consists of two or three figures. The first figure of the Kemler Code indicates the primary hazard, the second and third figures generally indicate secondary hazards. Doubling of a figure indicates an intensification of that particular hazard. Where the hazard associated with a substance can be adequately indicated by a single figure, this is followed by a zero.

If a hazard identification number is prefixed by letter 'X', this indicates that the substance will react dangerously with water.

Both the EAC and HI numbers are published every year in the NCEC's Dangerous Goods Code Emergency Action Code List. 


Placarding and marking of vehicles

Placarding refers to the 'hazard warning diamonds' that are required for tankers carrying bulk quantities of hazardous substances and other vehicles carrying class 1 or class 7 goods in packages. Placards are 250mm square and must be displayed according to the type of load, however, for small tanks or containers, the smaller (100x100mm) warning diamond 'package labels' can be used.

Marking refers to the plain orange ADR plates carried at the front of vehicles (and on the back of vehicles carrying packages). It also refers to the other marks (such as the (EHS) Environmentally Hazardous Substance mark, which are required, where appropriate, on the back and sides of vehicles.

ADR allows the familiar plain orange plate to be divided by a horizontal black line. 


Vehicles carrying packages

Vehicles carrying packages of dangerous goods must display the plain orange ADR plates, as described in ADR at A plain orange plate must be fixed at the front and back of the transport unit. There is the extra requirement for vehicles carrying class 1 (explosives) and class 7 (radioactive substances) to display placards on both sides and the rear of the vehicle.


ADR panel ADR plate LORRY



Freight containers carrying packages

This is similar to the above, but in this case the freight container should display relevant placards (hazard diamonds) on all four sides of the container.

 ADR panel ADR Plate container


Tanks, tank containers etc

Different requirements apply to GB domestic journeys and international journeys.

GB registered tank vehicles on GB domestic journey

GB registered vehicles on GB domestic journeys must be marked with the EAC and include a telephone number for advice in the event of an emergency. The requirement to display the plain orange plate at the front of the vehicle is the same as for packaged goods vehicles.  

ADR plate ADR panel tanker

Plus EHS Mark (where appropriate) on both sides and rear.

 EHS environmentally hazardous warning diamond marine pollutant

Tank vehicles on international journeys

Vehicles with tanks etc on international journeys must show the HI Number (Kemler Code) in addition to the other relevant marks and placards. 

ADR Plates should be displayed at the rear and both sides, with a plain orange plate at the front. Where one substance only is carried it is permissible to display plates at front and rear only, provided the front plate also carries the HI Number and UN Number. Under ADR there is no requirement to display a telephone number.

If you would like to purchase ADR Plates, ADR Panels or Hazchem Labels & vehicle marking, just visit our Stock-Xpress site


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