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In This Issue: January/February 2016 Issue

A sampling of topics of interest in the January/February 2016 issue of The Journal of HazMat Transportation.

HAZMAT LEGISLATION
On December 4, 2015, the President signed into law the “Fixing America’s Surface Transportation Act” or “FAST Act.” Included in this law is the “Hazardous Materials Transportation Safety Improvement Act of 2015” (HMTSIA 2015). HMTSIA 2015 authorizes appropriations for DOT’s hazardous materials transportation programs.
FAST Act – What's in it? Hazardous Materials Safety and Improvement

PHMSA ADOPTS 96 SPECIAL PERMITS INTO HMR
Final Rule HM-233F, “Hazardous Materials: Adoption of Special Permits,” was published on January 21, 2016, incorporating widely-used or long-standing special permits (SPs) into the Hazardous Materials Regulations.
PHMSA Issues HM-233F Final Rule Adopting 96 Special Permits into the HMR

REPORT FOR THE 48TH SESSION OF THE UN SCETDG
The United Nation Sub-Committee of Experts on the Transport of Dangerous Goods (UN SCETDG) held its 48th session in Geneva, Switzerland, from November 30 to December 9 2015. The meeting discussed a range of issues from explosives to lithium batteries. The results of discussion here and in the next biennium will culminate in the 20th edition of the UN Model Regulations.
Report of the 48th UN TDG Sub-Committee Meeting: November/December 2015, Second of the Biennium

REPORT FOR THE 25TH SESSION OF THE ICAO DGP
The International Civil Aviation Organization Dangerous Goods Panel (ICAO DGP) met for its 25th session in Montreal, Canada, from October 19 to 30 2015. Amendments agreed to at this meeting will be included in the 2017-2018 Technical Instructions. The DGP also considered decisions made by two previous DGP working group meetings.
A Review of Decisions by the 25th Session of the ICAO Dangerous Goods Panel (October 2015): Part I - Lithium Battery Related Changes; Part II - Other Amendments Discussed at the 25th Session of the ICAO Dangerous Goods Panel

INTERNATIONAL PROVISIONS FOR MARITIME TRANSPORT
Amendment 37-14 to the International Maritime Dangerous Goods (IMDG) Code became mandatory at the start of this year, with SOLAS container weight verification becoming in effect in July. Next year holds voluntary and then mandatory dates for Amendment 38-16, pushing further changes to the IMDG Code.
IMO Update: Changes to International Standards for Transportation by Vessel

GHS HARMONIZATION IN THE US
Incorporating labels from the Globally Harmonized System of Classification and Labelling of Chemicals (GHS) into the US hazcom system is raising many issues for those looking to conduct international trade, such as translation requirements and HCS2012 labeling for exports and imports.
Challenges for Supply Chain Hazard Communication Labeling

CLARIFYING AND CORRECTING LIBATT PROVISIONS
Final Rule HM-260 “Hazardous Materials: Editorial Corrections and Clarifications” was published in the Federal Register to correct misspellings, section references, restore text inadvertently deleted in the process of publishing past final rules and, in response to requests for clarification, clarify certain HMR regulatory provisions.
PHMSA’s HM-260 Editorial Corrections Rule Clarifies Lithium Battery Provisions

OVERPACKS AND PACKAGE MARKINGS
The International Air Transport Association (IATA) includes two requirements relating to the marking size requirements for proper shipping names. Finding a basis in the ICAO TI provides a point of reference for interpretation.
Examining the IATA Size Requirements for Proper Shipping Name Markings

DIFFERING MODAL REQUIREMENTS FOR COMBUSTIBLE PLACARDS
Different provisions exist in the HMR for requiring the lower portion of a COMBUSTIBLE placard depending on the mode of transportation.
Placard Requirements for Combustible Goods in Transport

OSHA’S INSPECTION AUTHORITY AND PRIORITIES
The Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) has authority to inspect workplaces and conduct investigations. Due to its workforce restrictions, it must prioritize inspections according to capacity. Employers are advised to be prepared accordingly.
OSHA Inspections: Agency Process and Employer Prerogative

COMMENTS ON DOT LETTERS OF INTERPRETATION
Comments are provided on recent interpretations from DOT concerning the definition of non-bulk and bulk, definition of a “tank car facility,” and inclusion of “limited quantity” on the NOPIC.
Comments on DOT Interpretations

In This Issue: November/December 2015 Issue

A sampling of topics of interest in the November/December 2015 issue of The Journal of HazMat Transportation.

TIANJIN DISASTER LEADING TO CHANGES IN CHINA
Catastrophic explosions rocked Tianjin Port, northern China, on August 12, causing 173 deaths and an estimated 11 billion USD in direct economic losses. This article reviews impacts on hazardous chemical logistics arising from the incident. Impact of Tianjin Disaster on Hazardous Chemical Logistics in China

CANADA’S PROOF OF CLASSIFICATION REQUIREMENT
A regulatory change found in the Canadian (TDGR) stemming from the July 2013 train accident in Lac-Mégantic, Quebec, can be found in TDGR section 2.2.1. It requires consignors to establish and keep available a “proof of classification” for all dangerous goods imported or offered for transport. This article examines the provisions and impacts of the requirement. Canadian “Proof of Classification” Is Unique Canadian Requirement for Dangerous Goods

PHMSA RESPONSES TO INDUSTRY CONCERNS IN THE HM-233E FINAL RULE
PHMSA published the HM-233E final rule, Special Permit and Approvals Operating Procedures and Evaluation Process, on September 10, 2015. This article examines industry concerns and PHMSA’s responses to those concerns in the final rule, in areas such as application backlog and processing time; the scope of an on-site inspection; the fitness determination process, and the legal effect of SOPs. HM-233E: Special Permit and Approvals Operating Procedures and Evaluation Process--Industry’s Comments and PHMSA’s Response

GHS LABELS ON TRANSPORT PACKAGES
With the ongoing implementation of the GHS worldwide, GHS labels are appearing more frequently on the outside of transport packagings. This article looks at the GHS labeling requirements, how they are being implemented and the implications for transport. GHS Implications for the Transport of Hazardous Materials in Packagings

CALIFORNIA STATE BILL COULD IMPACT RAIL TRANSPORT OF HAZMAT
California State Bill – SB84, if enacted, would require fees to be paid by a person owning any of the 25 most hazardous material commodities that are transported by rail in California. In this article the purpose, provisions and potential impacts of this bill are reviewed. California State Bill – SB84

PRE-MEETING REPORT FOR THE 48TH SESSION OF THE UN SCETDG
From November 30 to December 9, 2015, the UN Sub-Committee of Experts on the Transport of Dangerous Goods (SCETDG) will hold its 48th session. The agenda includes over 30 papers. This is the second of four sessions which will lead to changes in the 20th revised edition of the UN Model Regulations. The Journal will provide a full report on the proceedings in its January/February 2016 edition. Pre-Meeting Report on Proposals to be Discussed at the 48th Session of the UN Sub-Committee of Experts on the Transport of Dangerous Goods

PRE-MEETING REPORT FOR THE 30th SESSION OF THE UN SCGHS
From December 9 to 11, 2015, the UN Sub-Committee of Experts on the Globally Harmonized System of Classification and Labelling of Chemicals (SCGHS) will hold its 30th session in Geneva, Switzerland. The SCGHS agenda will address 9 formal proposals (working papers) in nine general topic areas and one or more informal (INF) papers. The Journal will provide a full report on the proceedings in its January/February 2016 edition. Pre-Meeting Report on Proposals to be Discussed at the 30th Session of the UN Sub-Committee of Experts on the Globally Harmonized System of Classification and Labelling of Chemicals

PHMSA RESPONDS TO HM-251 APPEALS
On November 18, 2015, PHMSA published a notice responding to five appeals to the HM-251 Enhanced Tank Car Standards and Operational Controls for High-Hazard Flammable Trains final rule. This article reviews the issues raised in those appeals and PHMSA’s responses to appellants. PHMSA Responds to HM-251 Appeals to Final Rule: Enhanced Tank Car Standards and Operational Controls for High-Hazard Flammable Trains

THE JOURNAL ANSWERS READERS’ QUESTIONS
This report responds to three recent questions from readers: using Section 14 of the Safety Data Sheet for an environmentally hazardous substance that is in an excepted quantity; using an emergency response guidebook for shipments by vessel; and, time limits, if any, on movement of a tank car filled prior to a past due test date. Reader’s Questions

COMMENTS ON DOT LETTERS OF INTERPRETATION
Comments are provided on recent interpretations from DOT concerning the classification of aqueous solutions of alcohol, use of the DANGEROUS placard, and the definition of “unrefined petroleum products” as used in the new § 173.41. Comments on DOT Interpretations

 

In This Issue: July/August 2015 Issue

A sampling of topics of interest in the July/August 2015 issue of The Journal of HazMat Transportation.

TRANSPORT CANADA’S PROPOSED RELEASE REPORTING REQUIREMENTS
Transport Canada recently proposed a revision to the Transport of Dangerous Goods Regulations that will result in significant changes to the Canadian system for reporting releases of dangerous goods. This report provides a thorough review of the proposed changes. Transport Canada Plans Update of Release Reporting Requirements

APPEALS TO THE HM-251 FINAL RULE
Five appeals to the HM-251 rail safety rule raise issues which may result in changes to the final rule or initiation of new rulemaking. The appellants represent a broad spectrum of rail safety stakeholders, including shippers, railroads, and Indian tribes. This article reviews the issues raised in the appeals. APPEALS TO THE HM-251 FINAL RULE

WORK PROGRESSES ON IMDG CODE AMENDMENT 38-16
The Editorial and Technical Working Group of the International Maritime Organization recently met to consider amendments to the International Maritime Dangerous Goods (IMDG) Code. The ongoing work at IMO will ultimately lead to issuance of IMDG Code amendment 38-16 which is expected to take effect on a voluntary basis on 1 January 2017 and become mandatory on 1 January 2018. Report of the 23rd IMO Editorial and Technical Working Group – May 18-23, 2015

HM-251’S IMPACT ON FLAMMABLE PRODUCTS
Final Rule HM-251, published in May, became effective as of July 7, 2015. The rulemaking provides two new definitions for trains transporting Class 3 flammable liquids. This report is the first in a series focusing on major concerns affecting industry. The HM-251 Final Rule’s Impact on Flammable Products

OSHA HAZCOM 2012—FOOD AND WASTES
This article explores provisions of the Occupational Safety and Health Administration’s HazCom 2012 applicable to food and wastes, including a comprehensive list of exemptions and exceptions provided under HCS 2012’s label exception sections in 29 CFR 1910.1200(b)(5) and the full and complete exemptions in (b)(6). OSHA Hazard Communication Requirements for Food and Wastes

COMMENTS ON DOT LETTERS OF INTERPRETATIONS
Comments are provided on recent interpretations from DOT concerning ICAO TI training requirements, packaging requirements for export shipments, and secondary means of closure on inner packagings. Comments on DOT Interpretations


POST-MEETING REPORT FOR THE 47TH SESSION OF UN SCETDG
The 47th session of the UN Sub-Committee of Experts on the Transport of Dangerous Goods (SCETDG) was held from June 22 to 26, 2015, in Geneva, Switzerland. This article reports on the discussions and decisions made at the 47th session. Report of the 47th UN TDG Sub-Committee Meeting: June 2015, First of the New Biennium

REQUIREMENTS FOR POLYMERIZING SUBSTANCES
The nineteenth edition of the UN Model Regulations introduces new requirements for polymerizing substances. This article explains what polymerizing substances are and how they are currently regulated in domestic and international regulations, and reviews the new requirements. The New Requirements for Polymerizing Substances

In This Issue: September/October 2015 Issue

A sampling of topics of interest in the September/October 2015 issue of The Journal of HazMat Transportation.

EUROPEAN ACCEPTANCE OF USA-MARKED PLASTIC PACKAGES
A question has arisen as to whether filled plastic packagings with a “USA” UN mark will be accepted for transport to final destination throughout Europe. It has been suggested that USA-marked packagings were only accepted up to the first warehouse delivery point after sea or air transport from the US. This article answers the question. Acceptance of Filled “USA” Marked UN Plastic Packagings in Europe, page 16-17

POST-HM-251 RAIL SAFETY ACTIVITIES BY THE NTSB AND STATES
Part 2 of a report on the impacts of the HM-251 final rule (Part 1 appeared in the August/September edition of The Journal), this article reviews recent rail-safety related activities, including a National Transportation Safety Board (NTSB) brake study, new Transport Canada and Federal Railroad Administration rules for unattended trains, and actions being taken by various state governments addressing the risks of crude oil and similar materials by rail. The HM-251 Final Rule’s Impact Part 2: NTSB Brake Study and Recommendations by State Governments, page 18-21

CHANGES TO EXCLUSIVE USE AND RADIOLOGICAL SURVEY REQUIREMENTS
This article reviews the impacts of recent regulatory changes affecting exclusive use shipments of radioactive materials and radiological survey requirements. Exclusive Use and Radiological Survey Requirements – The New Requirements, page 40-41

CORROSIVITY CLASSIFICATION ISSUES UNDER THE GHS
Use of the Globally Harmonized System’s (GHS’s) provisions for classification and packing group determinations for corrosive materials may lead to higher transportation costs. This article provides an overview of the GHS tiered classification process and addresses current issues. The Journal solicits input from our readers on the problems they may be facing in classifying corrosive products for export to Europe and elsewhere. Transport Corrosivity Issues Brought on by GHS, page 7-9

DOT INTERPRETATIONS ON EMERGENCY RESPONSE INFORMATION
This article provides an overview of the current regulatory requirements for emergency response information and summarizes a number of the many letters of interpretation that the Pipeline and Hazardous Materials Safety Administration (PHMSA) has issued in recent years in response to inquiries concerning these requirements. LOOKING AT EMERGENCY RESPONSE INFORMATION AS ADDRESSED IN DOT LETTERS OF INTERPRETATION, page 27-29

PRE-MEETING REPORT FOR THE 25TH SESSION OF THE ICAO DANGEROUS GOODS PANEL
The twenty-fifth session of the ICAO Dangerous Goods Panel will meet from October 19-30, 2015, in Montréal, Canada. The meeting will lead to amendments to the ICAO Technical Instructions for the 2017-2018 edition which will be effective beginning January 1, 2017. This article summarizes, and provides links to, the 47 working papers to be considered at the meeting. The 25th Session of the ICAO Dangerous Goods Panel Pre-Meeting Report: Review of Papers, page 30-33

COMMENTS ON RADIOACTIVE MATERIALS INTERPRETATIONS
This article analyzes two recent interpretations issued by PHMSA, one concerning the shipping description for a Class 7 (radioactive) YELLOW III- labeled package in a rigid overpack and the other on how to describe an externally contaminated non-spillable wet acid battery that meets Class 7 defining criteria. Two Reviews of DOT Letters of Interpretations, page 34-39

HM-233E FINAL RULE--SPECIAL PERMIT AND APPROVALS ADMINISTRATIVE PROCEDURES
This article (HazMat Alert 2015-43) reviews PHMSA’s latest final rule, HM-233E. The final rule, responds to a Congressional mandate and adopts regulations setting forth standard operating procedures (SOPs) to support the administration of PHMSA’s special permit and approval programs, and objective criteria to support the evaluation of special permit and approval applications, such as for determining the fitness of applicants to conduct operations requested in a special permit or approval application. PHMSA Issues HM-233E Final Rule: Special Permit and Approvals Operating Procedures and Evaluation Process, page 27-29

COMMENTS ON DOT LETTERS OF INTERPRETATIONS
Comments are provided on recent interpretations from DOT concerning whether a carrier assumes the role of shipper when using a salvage package, describing an oxygen cylinder with attachments as a “Lifesaving appliance”, and size limits for DOT 39 cylinders used for liquefied flammable gases. Comments on DOT Interpretations, page 22-26

 

In This Issue: May/June 2015 Issue

A sampling of topics of interest in the May/June 2015 issue of The Journal of HazMat Transportation.

COMPARISON OF DOT AND CANADIAN TANK CAR RULES
DOT’s HM-251 final rule was published in the Federal Register on May 8, with an effective date of July 7, 2015, and the Canadian amendment to the TDG Regulation known as TC 117 Tank Car was published in Canada Gazette II on May 20 (SOR/2015-100), coming into force on date of publication with a 6 month transition period. This article provides a comprehensive review and comparison of these two significant rules. Comparison of US DOT and Transport Canada Recent Rules for Safer Rail Transportation of Flammable Liquids, page 32-39

UNAPPROVED TANK CAR VALVES
A recent FRA railworthiness directive addresses leakage from certain valves on tank cars used for hazardous materials. FRA indicates the valves are not authorized and, in this directive addressed to all owners of tank cars used to transport hazardous materials in the U.S., requires these valves to be removed and replaced with authorized valves. Railworthiness Directive Identifies Unapproved McKenzie Tank Car Valves, page 26-28

RESULTS OF THE ICAO DGP MEETING
From April 27 to May 1 of this year, a Dangerous Goods Panel (DGP) working group meeting was held in preparation for the 25th session of the DGP to be held this fall. At DGP25, amendments will be adopted for inclusion in the 2017-2018 edition of the ICAO Technical Instructions. This report reviews discussions and actions taken with regard to lithium batteries, restrictions on e-cigarettes, packaging, shipper responsibilities, and other subjects. Results of the 2015 ICAO Dangerous Goods Panel Working Group Meeting, page 7-8

EMERGENCY ORDER 30 AND OTHER INTERIM RAIL SAFETY ACTIONS BY DOT
This article reviews recent interim actions taken by DOT intended to further address the continuing risks posed by the transportation in tank cars of large volumes of flammable liquids, particularly petroleum crude oils and ethanol. These actions, consisting of an FRA Emergency Order and three safety advisory notices issued by FRA and PHMSA, preceded DOT’s issuance of the final rule under HM-251, and most likely will remain in place until the safety enhancements embodied in the HM-251 final rule are in effect. DOT Interim Rail Safety Actions: An Emergency Order and Three Safety Advisories, page 40-42

DOMESTIC AND INTERNATIONAL GHS-RELATED LABELLING ISSUES
This article explores labelling issues related to the Occupational Safety and Health Administration’s requirements under HCS 2012, such as for labelling of combination packaging, and OSHA labelling versus that of the Consumer Product Safety Commission. It also reviews GHS labelling as implemented in Canada in the Hazardous Products Regulations and in Europe by EU regulations. Hazard Communication Label Challenges, page 9-12

COMMENTS ON DOT LETTERS OF INTERPRETATIONS
Comments are provided on recent interpretations from DOT addressing securement of IBCs and the definition of “lithium battery” and packaging and hazard communication for a large lithium battery contained in equipment. Comments on DOT Interpretations, page 19-21, and Lithium Batteries, page 17

PRE-MEETING REPORT FOR THE 47TH SESSION OF UN SCETDG
This report reviews proposals to be considered at the 47th session of the UN Sub-Committee of Experts on the Transport of Dangerous Goods (SCETDG) to be held from June 22 to 26, 2015, in Geneva, Switzerland. Summarizes are provided for both formal papers and informal papers concerning potential changes to the UN Model Regulations. Pre-Meeting Report on Proposals to be Discussed at the 47th Session of the UN Sub-Committee of Experts on the Transport of Dangerous Goods, page 46-47

HAZMAT EMPLOYEE TRAINING INTERPRETATIONS
PHMSA is frequently called on to answer questions concerning requirements for the training of “hazmat employees.” This report looks at a number of interpretations PHMSA has issued in the past concerning various aspects of hazmat employee training. Looking at Hazmat Training as Addressed in DOT Letters of Interpretations, page 13-16

BEST PRACTICES FOR CARGO TANK LOADING AND UNLOADING
This HazMat Alert reviews “best practices” for loading and unloading cargo tank motor vehicles (CTMVs), as recommended by PHMSA in a recent publication. The recommended practices are intended to enhance the safety of CTMV loading and unloading operations. PHMSA Issues Best Practices Guide for Cargo Tank Loading/Unloading, page 22-23