Rulemakings and Regulatory News
The Pipeline and Hazardous Materials Safety Administration (PHMSA) is responsible for rulemakings, letters of interpretation and controlled correspondence, petitions for rulemaking, National Transportation Safety Board (NTSB) recommendations, administrative appeals, paperwork reduction initiatives, international position papers, and agenda items for hazardous materials transportation safety.
PHMSA Safety Advisory Notice: Roadway Striping and Use of Non-DOT Specification Cargo Tanks
On August 12, 2021, PHMSA published a safety advisory notice concerning roadway striping and the use of non-DOT specification cargo tanks, per 49 CFR § 173.5a(c). The notice was developed after recent inspections detected a trend of non-compliance with testing of non-DOT specification cargo tanks. Roadway striping stakeholders appear to be unaware of the requirements of the Hazardous Materials Regulations (HMR; 49 CFR Parts 171-180) for the use of non-DOT specification cargo tanks and other requirements (e.g., training, shipping papers). PHMSA will be initiating additional outreach efforts to reach stakeholder audiences that may not normally consult the HMR. Planned outreach includes webinars and communication with roadway striping industry associations.
For more information, visit: https://www.phmsa.dot.gov/news/phmsa-safety-advisory-notice-roadway-striping-and-use-non-dot-specification-cargo-tanks.
Notice of Proposed Rulemaking HM-215P – Harmonization with International Standards NPRM
On August 10, 2021, PHMSA published a notice of proposed rulemaking (NPRM), HM-215P “Hazardous Materials: Harmonization with International Standards,” to the Federal Register. This NPRM proposes amendments to the HMR to maintain alignment with international regulations and standards by adopting various amendments, including changes to proper shipping names, hazard classes, packing groups, special provisions, packaging authorizations, air transport quantity limitations, and vessel stowage requirements. The comment period for this NPRM ends on October 12, 2021.
The NPRM can be viewed here: https://www.federalregister.gov/documents/2021/08/10/2021-15425/hazardous-materials-harmonization-with-international-standards
Final Rule HM-215K: ORM-D Phase-out
After December 31, 2020, hazmat shippers can no longer use the ORM-D Consumer Commodity marking on packages containing limited quantities of low risk hazardous materials. Final Rule (FR) HM-215K revised the HMR to align with international standards and specified the phase-out of the marking for limited quantity materials reclassed as “other regulated material” (ORM-D). Packages must be marked with the Limited Quantity marking as prescribed in § 172.315 of the HMR.
For more information, visit: https://www.phmsa.dot.gov/training/hazmat/orm-d-phase-out.
Workshops, Webinars, and Events
PHMSA offers hazardous materials transportation training workshops and webinars. These free training opportunities are for anyone who offers or transports hazardous materials in commerce or has a desire to learn more about the HMR.
For more information, visit: https://www.phmsa.dot.gov/hazmat/seminars/webinars.
Office of Hazardous Materials Safety 2021 Research, Development & Technology Forum
The Office of Hazardous Material Safety (OHMS) Research, Development & Technology (RD&T) Branch will be hosting the 2021 RD&T Forum from October 12th to the 15th. The forum will focus on outreach and engagement with stakeholders, particularly in the hazardous materials industry and research community. Topics include program overviews, risk analysis, energy products, and packaging. The goal is to showcase the RD&T program initiatives, as well as the current priorities of the research program, and to provide attendees an opportunity to interact with PHMSA’s top leaders and subject matter experts. Additionally, this is an opportunity to receive feedback from stakeholders on research gaps and needs that RD&T can use to craft project funding priorities.
For more information, visit https://www.federalregister.gov/documents/2021/09/23/2021-20599/hazardous-materials-public-meeting-notice-for-the-research-development-and-technology-forum.
If you are interested in attending the event, please fill out the registration form here: https://forms.office.com/pages/responsepage.aspx?id=WyTNxPBElUOhqjhI0lj3i42Qs1CodOdEpKD7cpFYhKRUNE9LRTlWVkI3QjlFSkhIUVFZNVFNWEpUSi4u.
PHMSA develops compliance assistance materials that make it easier to understand and comply with the HMR. All publications below are available at: https://www.phmsa.dot.gov/training/hazmat/publications.
DOT Chart 17
The DOT Chart for hazardous material placard, label, and marking specifications has been updated to the newest version, “Chart 17,” and is now available on PHMSA’s website.
Physical copies of the Chart 17 Poster can be ordered inside the PHMSA Portal system at: https://portal.phmsa.dot.gov/PHMSAPortal2/.
The 2021 Registration Process Information brochure is now available online. This publication discusses PHMSA’s Hazmat Registration program and explains who must register, when and how to register, registration costs, and other important information. Click here to see the full brochure.
How to Use the HMR
The HMR are issued by PHMSA and govern the transportation of hazmat in all modes of transportation—air, highway, rail, and water. The HMR are divided into four general areas: operational rules: hazmat identification and classification, hazard communication, packaging requirements. The HMR must be used to determine the requirements for shipping hazmat and should be treated as a technical or reference book. Our “How to Use the HMR” book will help you comply with those requirements. Click here to see the full booklet.
7 Useful Tips (English/Spanish)
This poster will help you ship hazardous materials safely in commerce by providing guidance for classifying materials, training employees, registering, selecting approved packaging, marking and labeling packages, verifying highway transport and placarding requirements, and preparing shipping papers. Click here to see the full poster.
Updates to the Federal Hazardous Materials Law Regulations September 2021
The Federal Hazardous Materials Transportation law (Federal Hazmat law), 49 U.S.C. § 5101 et seq., is the basic statute regulating hazardous materials transportation in the United States. Click to view Federal Hazardous Materials Transportation Law: An Overview.
Lithium Battery Guide
This newly developed publication is designed to assist shippers of all technical backgrounds and experience levels to understand and comply with the HMR requirements for shipping lithium cells and batteries. The publication simplifies the complex and varied requirements into scenario-based shipping guides based on battery type, size, and chemistry. Keep an eye out for an upcoming webinar introducing the guide and its use coming later in 2021! Click to view the publication here.
Hazmat Transportation Training Modules
OHMS has developed a free online training module program for hazmat employees and employers to meet the requirements for general awareness/familiarization training and security awareness training, both of which are required by the HMR. New features and interactivity have been added in 2021. Click here to visit the training website to register.