numbers on trucks

What do all those numbers on trucks mean? Such as 1203 for gasoline and where can I find a list of the numbers? It would be nice to know
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On Wednesday, October 15, 2014 6:46:30 AM UTC-4, herb white wrote:

I googled 1203 and one of the autofill options was "1203 Hazmat". Following that link got me to
http://www.mcor-nmra.org/publications/articles/reading%20hazardous%20materials%20placards.pdf
which looks like what you want.
Paul
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here is a link to, perhaps, ALL the numbers, as part of a FREE online version of the Emergency Response Guidebook:
http://wwwapps.tc.gc.ca/saf-sec-sur/3/erg-gmu/erg/idindex.aspx
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herb white posted for all of us...

As the other posters have indicated it is a placard for hazardous materials. It was set up by the US DOT for implementation by first responders. IIRC it was mandated by the deaths of 5 volunteer firefighters near Stoudsburg, PA that were responding to a truck fire. Unknown to them because it had NO markings & they were unable to access the logs it contained a quantity of explosives. The resultant crater was about 30' in dia. and 10' deep.
When I was a chief I had one of "the orange books" in my vehicle along with every other officer and piece of equipment. I also had binoculars to read the number from a distance. It contained a brief description of what the chemical was and cautions on f/f and exposure. We would also call county dispatch and have them call Chemtrec and the weather service for conditions. Now the fire services have hazmat groups throughout the county and they are contacted to deal with it. An initial response may include an evacuation of an area and then hang back. Remember: "To do nothing is to do something"
The other placards indicate corrosives, flammables, etc. It seems to me that there are a lot less trucks placarded these days. They all can't be carrying paper...
Milk used to be considered a hazmat, now it is not.
--
Tekkie

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Tekkie® wrote:

An oddity is new car batteries are HazMat. 45,000 pounds of semi-discharged dead batteries leaking sulfuric acid aren't. Which I thought was great when I was running scrap batteries from Denver to the recycler in LA. Communing with the goats on Rt. 6 rather than slipping through the Eisenhower tunnel sucks.
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On 10/15/2014 6:46 AM, herb white wrote:

They are Department of Transportation, DOT, hazardous chemical designations. Google up DOT UN numbers for specific numbers. Depending how hazardous the material, the quantity will require putting the number on the transport or package. Most chemicals below one gallon don't require them.
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Lists_of_UN_numbers
I've worked with these things and always figured less than one percent of the public would recognize their significance. Emergency responders should and should carry lists as number itself is meaningless.
DOT placards will also contain symbols for flammability and toxicity etc.
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