Dangerous Substances Monitoring and Alert Group (DSMAG) has its origin in a survey conducted by IPC in January 2019. This survey related to the issue of Fentanyl travelling within the postal network, its awareness and processes applied to resolve the issue. However, the scope of the Dangerous Substances Monitoring and Alert Group (DSMAG) is broader than Fentanyl and covers any suspicious substances, powders, liquids and illegal goods, e.g. batteries, weapons, etc. going through postal pipelines and that represent a risk for postal employees and, or customers. The main objective of DSMAG is to support all members in preventing serious accidents happening while processing dangerous substances through their postal pipelines.

How does it work?

 DSMAG helps member posts lessen the risk of dangerous substances through their pipelines in several ways:

  • Alerting of potentials risks through the on-going collection of information on the circulation of dangerous substances through the network of members in the form of alerts. The alert process aims to ensure the immediate circulation of alerts about dangerous substances through the postal network and allows the quick adoption of measures to ensure the safety and security of the postal personnel and consumers.
  • Raising awareness, exchanging best practices and enhancing the knowledge about the dangerous effects of certain substances through the development of a process within DSMAG to continuously share experiences, increase awareness among members, and provide trainings on how to handle dangerous substances. This knowledge base will also include input from customs and security authorities.
  • Aligning and harmonising the processes amongst the members through a centrally coordinated contact list of security specialists and managers. A list of dangerous substances will be progressively developed in the Monitoring process based on the cases and incidents reported.
  • Monitoring the overall issue with pertinent statistics and KPIs through the development and maintenance of a regular monitoring reporting system for DSMAG providing statistical information. IPC produces Monitoring Reports on a quarterly basis.

Benefits

The actions of DSMAG will help posts to address some of the issues identified in the survey held in January 2019, including improving:

  • Awareness on the issue of Fentanyl and other dangerous substances circulating via the posts, and the risks involved in their circulation;
  • Intelligence, data and assessment of the risks;
  • Strategies, standardised procedures and policies in place to ensure safety of postal workers;
  • Best practices exchange.

Moreover, one of the priorities of DSMAG is to involve the customs and security authorities in the Alerts process and make sure information is shared quickly. As part of the monitoring process, IPC will circulate quarterly to all members a simple questionnaire, reminding them to compile data and report information received from the customs or other security authorities.

DSMAG was launched in the second half of 2019 with 12 IPC members and aims to expand to more posts.

More information

For more information about this service, please contact ipc.dsmag@ipc.be.