Hazardous Materials Transportation Training

U.S. DOT Issues New Hazmat Regulations

By Roy Marshall, President, Regulations Training

The latest in a continuing series of regulations designed to keep U.S. shippers and carriers in harmony with international hazardous materials regulations, was published on January 14, 2009 by DOT's Pipeline and Hazardous Materials Safety Administration (PHMSA). Two dockets were included in this publication: HM-215J Harmonization With the United Nations Recommendations, International Maritime Dangerous Goods Code (IMDG Code), and International Civil Aviation Organization's Technical Instructions (ICAO TI) and HM-224D Revision to Requirements for the Transportation of Batteries and Battery-Powered Devices.

Adoption of New International Regulations:

HM-215J updates 49 CFR to include changes in the following international regulations: Fifteenth revised edition of the UN Recommendations, the 2008 Edition of the IMDG Code which includes Amendment 34, and the 2009-2010 ICAO TI. It should be noted that all three publications became effective January 1, 2009.

Compliance Dates:

Voluntary Compliance Date: January 1, 2009
Effective Date: February 13, 2009
Delayed (mandatory) Compliance Date*: January 1, 2010
* Except as specified in Sections 171.14, 171.25, 172.102, 172.448, and 178.703.

Why you need to look at HM-215J

To begin with, the 215 series of harmonization dockets always have changes to the Hazardous Materials Table (HMT). This is a must check list as these changes include adding, revising or removing certain proper shipping names, hazard classes, packing groups, special provisions, packaging authorizations, bulk packaging requirements, passenger and cargo aircraft maximum quantity limitations and vessels stowage provisions. Get it, read it and make the changes - before the mandatory compliance deadline arrives!

Other changes include:

Small Quantity Exceptions

Amendments maintaining current allowances for small quantities of Division 2.2, Class 3, Division 4.1, Division 4.2 (PG II and III), Division 4.3 (PG II and III), Division 5.1, Division .2, Division 6.1, Class 7, Class 8, and Class 9 materials transported by highway and rail and adopting the UN and ICAO excepted quantity provisions for transportation by aircraft or vessel. DOT believes that aligning the existing small quantity provisions with the excepted quantity provisions for air and vessel transportation will enhance harmonization and increase safety. DOT is revising 173.4 to be for domestic highway and rail transportation and adding Section 173.4a which matches international excepted quantity provisions for air and vessel transportation.

Incident Reporting

Revising exceptions and special provisions applicable to batteries to include incident reporting requirements.

Organic Peroxide Tables

Changes to the Organic Peroxide Tables to add, revise, or remove certain hazardous materials and provisions.

Marine Pollutants

Recently, the classification criteria for marine pollutants in the IMDG Code were amended for consistency with the aquatic toxicity criteria adopted within the Globally Harmonized System of Classification and Labeling of Chemicals (GHS). The HMR currently allows materials meeting the criteria of a marine pollutant under the prior IMDG Code criteria to be classed as such for domestic or international transportation. The new classification system adopted in the IMDG Code is very complicated, and the associated criteria for classifying mixtures containing marine pollutants would involve an additional layer of complexity without a corresponding public benefit. Therefore DOT is maintaining the current regulations in 49 CFR to facilitate transportation without mandating use of the new GHS-based criteria.


Effective January 14, 2010 the new MARINE POLLUTANT mark required in domestic transportation will be as shown below.

DOT 49 CFR hazardous materials and dangerous goods marine pollutant placard


This label will not become mandatory in either domestic or international air transportation until January 1, 2013. However, it can be used now in place of the previous CARGO AIRCRAFT ONLY label.

DOT 49 CFR hazardous materials and dangerous goods cargo aircraft only mark graphic


The following new international marking is being adopted for domestic transportation. Note the "*" must be replaced by the primary hazard class or division number and the "**" must be replaced by the name of the shipper or consignee, if not shown elsewhere on the package.

DOT 49 CFR hazardous materials and dangerous goods excepted quantities mark graphic

New Markings for IBCs

All Intermediate Bulk Containers (IBCs) manufactured, repaired or remanufactured after January 1, 2011 will have to display one of the following symbols:

DOT 49 CFR hazardous materials and dangerous goods IBC stack/no stack marks graphic

For IBCs designed for stacking the figure on the left must include the maximum permitted stacking load in kilograms.

HM-224D Amendments To Enhance the Safe Transportation of Batteries and Battery-Powered Devices

Consistent with recent changes to the International Civil Aviation Organization's Technical Instructions, PHMSA is clarifying the prohibition against transporting electrical devices, including batteries and battery-powered devices that are likely to create sparks or generate a dangerous amount of heat. PHMSA is also modifying and enhancing requirements for the packaging and handling of batteries and battery-powered devices, particularly in air commerce, to emphasize the safety precautions that are necessary to prevent incidents during transportation. PHMSA developed these revisions in conjunction with the Federal Aviation Administration to enhance the safe transportation of batteries and battery-powered devices.

Included in the final rule are requirements to report incidents involving batteries and battery-powered devices that result in a fire, violent rupture, explosion, or dangerous evolution of heat. If the incident happens in air transportation, immediate notification must be made to the National Response Center, in addition to a written report; clarification of requirements regarding the offering of batteries, battery-powered devices and vehicles to assure that short-circuiting, unintentional activation and other incidents do not occur; clarification of whether a battery is considered non-spillable and a new section outlining conditions for packaging and transport of batteries determined to be non-spillable; requirements to mark "not restricted" on transport documents, such as an air waybill, and the package, to indicate "batteries dry, sealed" are in compliance with applicable special provisions and exceptions; clarification of the requirements for the transport of dry batteries.

HM-145N Revisions to the List of Hazardous Substances and Reportable Quantities. Published in January 2008, these changes are important if you ship hazardous substances. PHMSA periodically revises the list of hazardous substances and RQs as changes are made by U.S. EPA CERCLA requirements. This final rule also corrects several hazardous substances listed in Table 1 of the Appendix A to Section 172.101 which show incorrect RQs. It should be noted that the majority of RQ adjustments are upwards, e.g., 10 lbs --> 100 lbs., which leads to cost savings for shippers by reducing the number of shipments subject to the hazard communication requirements. It also reduces reporting requirements.

Published: January 7, 2008
Voluntary Compliance Date: February 29, 2008
Effective Date: March 31, 2008

This article provides general information regarding new regulations, consult full text of current regulations, including any revisions, before determining compliance actions.

Roy Marshall is a hazardous materials specialist for Regulations Training, Inc. d/b/a HazardousMaterials.com and conducts coursse on air, highway, rail and ocean transportation. He can be reached at 1-800-317-0518. For more articles, information and HazMat Web site links, visit www.HazardousMaterials.com.

Published in Chemical Distributor, Volume 31, No. 2
Copyright © 2009, National Association of Chemical Distributors, Arlington, VA.
A publication of the National Association of Chemical Distributors [NACD].


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Roy Marshall
Regulations Training, Inc.
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