by Julie DeLong, A-1 Freeman Moving Group
As if moving wasn’t worrisome enough, did you know that there are several things your movers cannot move?
When you choose a moving company, they will supply you a list of the items that they can't transport to your new residence in Tulsa and Oklahoma City. They are not attempting to make your life crazier, they are adhering to the U.S. Department of Transportation statute (49 CFR 100-185) which details hazardous materials that aren't safe to put in a truck. There are some items on the list of non-transportables that are not hazardous, but that won't endure being in a closed truck and the moving company will not move.
Since you're a rational law-abiding individual, it's probably never dawned on you that you're actually housing dangerous explosives wherever you keep your cleaning supplies. You've likely looked around the garage and thought about your lawn mower going on the moving truck, but there are many other items that are regarded to be dangerous and you will need to be responsible for getting out of your house.
Any item with chemicals is a definite moving no-no. This is because chemicals have a bad tendency of doing bad things if they are mixed with other chemicals, which can easily occur in a moving van. A good rule of thumb is that if you cannot place the item in your regular trash for pick up, it shouldn’t be packed up and put on a truck. So not only must you deplete the gas tanks on any lawn equipment (mowers, leaf blowers, weed whackers, etc), either use any fertilizers and grass seed or give it to your neighbors—a little Miracle-gro and a little leaking gasoline can produce a detrimental outcome. And what’s worse—anything that is damaged are your responsibility because you were warned what not to put on the moving truck. It's not the moving company's job to double check all your boxes for dangerous items, so make sure that any hazardous items-including old paint, batteries, aerosol cans, charcoal, and paint thinner—are NOT packed for the moving van. The ideal thing to do is take them to your local hazardous waste drop-off facility or give them away to someone who can use them.
What about your houseplants? Food items? Your dog? If you can believe it, some people have asked that their pets be put on the moving truck—the answer is a firm no. That the moving company can't transport your plants may be a little more surprising. Interstate moves create an issue in that states are sensitive to foreign vegetation coming in, and you do not want to inadvertently bring pests to either the truck or your new house. If plants are moving more than 150 miles you might need to obtain a certain permit to transport them—so if you're the one who brought in canker worms or aphids, your new state of residence can locate you. As for food items in your cupboard, only pack up sealed, non-perishable stuff with a long shelf life. Better, donate your new canned goods, cereals, and cookies to a local charity, and begin anew at your new residence. Toss out anything perishable or open, unless you are going to ice down coolers and move them yourself.
Although your valuables are not dangerous goods or likely to start an ash borer invasion, most moving companies are unwilling to move jewelry, cash, stock certificates and other valuable belongings. The dangers of being misplaced are too large, bring them along with you in a carry on, or place them with other valuable documents.
Other items you may not recognize is hazardous—nail polish, cleaning supplies, liquid bleach, fire extinguishers—are also not approved to be moved commercially. Again, anything chemical or flammable is not allowed on a moving truck, so be smart and dispose of or pack those items separately. The simpliest option is to properly dispose of these things and get everything new after you have moved, so you'll have brand new paint thinner and batteries to go with your brand-new house.