PHMSA issues HM-215O final rule

By: Mike Atkinson

Publication: Hazmat Transportation Regulatory Alert

Date Posted: 06/01/2020

PHMSA HM-2150 Rule

The Pipeline and Hazardous Materials Safety Administration (PHMSA) published its long-awaited final rule for HM-215O - Harmonization with International Standards. The amendments to theHazardous Materials Regulations (HMR) in this final rule became effective on May 11, 2020.

HM-215O incorporates by reference current versions of international standards, which include:

  • International Civil Aviation Organization (ICAO) Technical Instructions,
  • International Maritime Dangerous Goods (IMDG) Code,
  • United Nations (UN) Model Regulations,
  • UN Manual of Tests and Criteria,
  • Globally Harmonized System (GHS) of Classification and Labelling of Chemicals,
  • Canadian Transportation of Dangerous Goods Regulations, and
  • International Organization for Standardization (ISO) standards.

Changes in this rule affect the HMR in Parts 171, 172, 173, 174, 175, 176, 178, and 180. Some of the major changes include:

  • Making numerous changes to the §172.101 Hazardous Materials Table including adding, revising, or removing shipping names, hazard classes, packing groups, special provisions, packaging authorizations, and bulk packaging requirements.
  • Adding a classification system for articles containing hazardous materials that do not already have a proper shipping name. This addresses situations in which hazardous materials or hazardous materials residues are present in articles and authorizes a safe method to transport articles that may be too large to fit into typical packages.
  • Requiring lithium battery manufacturers to test lithium batteries and make the lithium battery test summary available to subsequent distributors.
  • Requiring luggage (smart bags/luggage) equipped with a lithium battery or batteries to be carried in the cabin of the aircraft unless the battery or batteries are removed.
  • Adding segregation requirements for lithium batteries when transported on aircraft with other hazardous materials.
  • Including a non-testing alternative for classifying corrosive mixtures using existing data on its chemical properties.
  • Extending sunset dates for provisions concerning the transportation of polymerizing substances from January 2, 2019, to January 2, 2023.

Even though this rule was effective on May 11, 2020, mandatory compliance won’t take effect until May 10, 2021.

About the author
Mike Atkinson - Hazmat Transportation Editor

Mike expertise is in operations, management, hazmat preparation, hazmat inspection, logistics, and material handling

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