PHMSA snuck a new marking/labeling requirement for excepted lithium batteries shipped by all modes (including ground shipments) into its HM-224I lithium battery "harmonization" Interim Final Rule, in effect as of March 6, 2019.
As energy storage technology improves, so will the ferocity with which lithium batteries can potentially ignite or “explode.” For safety professionals, this means that training on safe lithium battery handling procedures may be a smart addition to any workplace safety program—and may even be required under OSHA’s General Duty Clause.
The updates in PHMSA’s IFR may look familiar to lithium battery shippers—these three new requirements were added to the ICAO Technical Instructions and the IATA Dangerous Goods Regulations as “emergency revisions” in 2016.
For those of us who experience the joys of shipping lithium batteries, you have probably come to the realization that the regulators like to change the rules regarding them and do that on a frequent basis. Just when you finally get your operations in order, they change what is required.
Lithium battery events are actually very unlikely. When calculated out, there are usually only around two or three battery-related events per one million batteries. However, when an event does occur, it is extremely dangerous.
Updates in the proposed rule will incorporate recent amendments to international regulation and consensus standards into 49 CFR and make changes to nearly every part of the hazmat rules, including Proper Shipping Names, hazard classes, packing groups, special provisions, packaging authorizations, and quantity limits.
Add “exploding lithium batteries” to the list of occupational hazards that law enforcement officers face every day.
The semi-annual Regulatory Agenda for Fall 2018 is out now. This Agenda provides insight into what kind of rulemakings major Federal agencies—including US DOT, FAA, EPA, and OSHA—have planned for the next six months.
US FAA issued a six-figure fine for a Hong Kong company that allegedly shipped lithium batteries, undeclared, by air. Besides failing to properly classify, name, package, mark, label or document the shipment, the company also did not provide requried hazmat training for employees, according to FAA.
On May 10, 2018, PHMSA, along with other Federal Agencies, published its Regulatory Agenda for Spring 2018. That Agenda lists a handful of new rules pertaining to hazardous materials transportation safety, which PHMSA plans to promulgate in the second half of the year.
Get to know the top 5 changes to OSHA’s revised GHS Hazard Communication Standard at 29 CFR 1910.1200 and how the updates impacts employee safety at your facility.