The agreement itself is brief and simple, and its most important article is article 2. This article states that with the exception of certain exceptionally dangerous materials, hazardous materials may in general be transported internationally in wheeled vehicles, provided that two sets of conditions be met:
- Annex A regulates the merchandise involved, notably their packaging and labels.
- Annex B regulates the construction, equipment, and use of vehicles for the transport of hazardous materials.
The appendices consist of nine chapters, with the following contents
- General provisions: terminology, general requirements
- Classification: classification of dangerous goods
- Dangerous Goods List sorted by UN number, with references to specific requirements set in chapters 3 to 9; special provisions and exemptions related to dangerous goods packed in limited quantities
- Packaging and tank provisions
- Consignment procedures, labeling, and marking of containers and vehicles.
- Construction and testing of packagings, intermediate bulk containers (IBCs), large packagings, and tanks
- Conditions of carriage, loading, unloading, and handling
- Vehicle crews, equipment, operation, and documentation
- Construction and approval of vehicles