The Pipeline and Hazardous Materials Safety Administration (PHMSA) recently announced a final rule amending the Federal Hazardous Materials Regulations.
The rule streamlines the transport of hazardous materials, encourages shippers to package goods more efficiently, and harmonizes U.S. laws with numerous international standards.
Specifically, the rule encourages the use of animal-friendly alternative hazard testing to reduce the prevalence of animal testing; updates packaging construction provisions; updates the requirements for transporting damaged or defective lithium batteries; improves the process for recycling or disposing of small gas or fuel cell cartridges; and updates standards for the manufacture, use, and certification of pressure vessels used to transport gases for medical, manufacturing, and other uses.
“The United States is a global leader in safely and efficiently transporting hazardous materials that are essential to supporting our economy,” Tristan Brown, PHMSA deputy administrator, said. “The new rule will improve supply chains, reduce prices for consumers, and produce environmental benefits without sacrificing safety.”
Over the next 10 years, the rule will save consumers approximately $250 million in shipping costs, according to PHMSA estimates.
The rule also allows for more goods to be transported in fewer trips, reducing supply chain disruptions and greenhouse gas emissions.
Hazardous materials include batteries, components used in manufacturing, and medical supplies.