Internal experts, mandatory practices and effective processes help ensure our products are transported safely
Each day, our products are transported by land, sea and air around the world. The combination of internal experts, mandatory practices and effective processes helps ensure they arrive at their destination safely.
Globally, about 85% of our transportation is by truck. While we have a small fleet of company-owned trucks and vans for local delivery from our stores, the vast majority of our shipments are handled by third parties. We work with these carriers to ensure our products are transported safely and compliantly so incidents do not occur.
Before engaging the services of a third-party transport provider or renewing an existing contract, we assess the company’s safety record, financial security and other factors. We do not contract with any company that does not meet our requirements.
Each carrier we do engage must sign our transportation agreement, which includes specific requirements related to safety and valid operating authority. These include:
- Maintaining a "satisfactory" U.S. Department of Transportation (DOT) safety rating or its foreign equivalent. Should a carrier's safety rating change, the carrier must notify us in writing within five days of receiving notification from the respective government authority.
- Ensuring drivers and employees are fully trained and hold the qualifications, permits and licenses required by law or regulation to perform the services.
- Training drivers in the proper handling of our shipments from point of origin to point of delivery.
- Ensuring employees and drivers comply with all applicable safety laws, PPG environment, health, and safety requirements, facility standard operating procedures, and any rules, policies and procedures in effect at PPG or customer facilities.
- Promptly reporting any incidents to PPG and, when required, governmental agencies.
We have additional layers of assessment, evaluation and periodic review for carriers that transport hazardous materials or dangerous goods. We manage this mandatory practice through our transportation of dangerous goods management system.
In 2021, there were 561 incidents reported via a U.S. DOT 5800 incident report or PPG transportation incident report. Of these incidents, 16 were considered significant based on our internal criteria and that of the Sustainability Accounting Standards Board (SASB). Of these 16, 12 occurred internationally and four were within the U.S. The latter considers significant transport incidents as those that require immediate notice of a hazardous materials incident to a governmental authority.
Our transportation of dangerous goods management system establishes criteria for reporting significant incidents via our EHS incident reporting system. We investigate each significant incident and implement appropriate corrective actions to minimize their recurrence.
In addition to the safe transportation of our products to their destination, we are also committed to identifying additional actions we can take to ensure sustainable transportation. While PPG operates a localized manufacturing model – meaning paint and coatings products manufactured in a country are often sold in that same market – we are continuously looking for additional ways to manufacture product closest to our customers, resulting in lower transportation costs and emissions. Our supply chain teams encourage high truck utilization as well as substantial use of train transport, with lower carbon emissions as a result. While integrating the acquisitions we completed in 2021, we also began an initiative to consolidate shipments to ensure larger amounts of product are on a truck at any given time, therefore reducing the total miles required to deliver our products.
Furthermore, in Birstall, United Kingdom, we replace vehicles every six years to ensure fuel efficiency, and recently replaced 18 vehicles in our fleet as part of the initiative. We also train drivers on safe and fuelefficient driving, then monitor their efficiency on a weekly basis. In the Czech Republic and Slovakia, we provide incentives for fuel-efficient driving.