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Hazardous Materials Harmonization with the United Nations Recommendations, International Maritime Dangerous Goods Code, and the International Civil Organization Technical Instructions for the Safe Transport of Dangerous Goods by Air HM-215L

Abstract: The Federal hazardous materials transportation law requires the Secretary of Transportation to ensure that, to the extent practicable, regulations governing the transportation of hazardous materials in commerce are consistent with standards adopted by international authorities (49 U.S.C. 5120(b)). Harmonization enhances safety, facilitates compliance, and improves the efficiency of the global transportation system by minimizing the regulatory burden on the public thus promoting trade. After a thorough review of the provisions recently adopted by various international regulatory bodies, PHMSA has identified areas in the Hazardous Materials Regulations (HMR) in which harmonization with international regulations will provide an enhanced level of safety, an economic benefit or in many instances both safety and economic benefits. As a result, this rulemaking would amend the HMR, where appropriate, to maintain alignment with international standards that will become effective as of January 1, 2013 and consequently facilitate the safe global trade of hazardous materials. Proposals in this rulemaking include, but are not limited to; the introduction of regulatory requirements to address chemicals under pressure, the modification of packaging instructions for various hazardous materials to permit greater flexibility in package selection while achieving a consistent level of safety, the adoption of Internationally recognized standards for testing and proper use of flexible bulk containers and the revision of various entries in the hazardous materials table to maintain global alignment including revision of vessel stowage codes for shipments of Class 1 Explosive materials. We expect the regulatory changes will result in minimal compliance costs for the regulated industry; we firmly believe consistent regulatory requirements reduce compliance costs and increase flexibility.
RIN: 2137-AE87
Type: Rule Making
SUB TYPE Hazardous Materials
Disposition Pending
Action Office PHH-10
Government Level Affected No

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