Search

Question of the Week: Exceptions for Lithium Batteries

Posted on 3/29/2011 by James Griffin

Q. I have been told that I cannot ship lithium batteries as limited quantities, but can receive similar relief when following the special provisions found in the 171.101 Hazardous Materials Table. How do the two types of relief compare?

A. It is true that lithium batteries shipped under the DOT Hazardous Material Regulations cannot be shipped under the limited quantity exceptions. However, if properly classified and packaged, lithium batteries can receive as much or more relief from the regulations than limited quantity shipments. Unlike the limited quantities relief, which is found in the packing authorizations in column 8A of the 172.101 table, the relief for lithium batteries can be found as part of the special provisions listed in column 7.

When shipping hazardous materials as limited quantities, you get the following reliefs:
  • Hazard labels are not required, except for air shipments
  • Shipping papers and emergency response information are not required, except for hazardous substances, hazardous wastes, marine pollutants, or if transported by aircraft or vessel
  • Placards are not required
  • Specification packaging is not required, but
    • packagings must still meet general requirements (49 CFR 173 Subpart B), and
    • specific weight limitations apply (49 CFR 173.150-173.156)
Small and medium lithium batteries can receive relief from nearly all the Hazardous Material Regulations when following the special provisions in 49 CFR 172.102 (SP 29, 188, 189, and 190), additional restrictions and reliefs apply when shipping by air (A54, A55, A100, A101, A103, or A104).

The restrictions and procedures necessary to follow, however, can be more extensive, and may include:
  • Being of a type proven to meet the testing requirements of the UN Manual of Tests and Criteria
  • Meeting unique size restrictions for lithium primary vs. secondary lithium batteries
  • Packaging cells or batteries to prevent short circuits
  • Using strong outer packagings
  • Primary (non-rechargeable) lithium batteries are largely prohibited for transport by air
Want to learn more about Lithium Battery shipping rules? Prepare yourself with Lion’s lithium battery shipper webinar or online course.

Tags: DOT, hazmat shipping, limited quantities, lithium batteries

Find a Post

Compliance Archives

Lion - Quotes

I really enjoyed this training. Even after years on both sides of the comprehension coin, I find myself still learning! The quality of the delivery exceeded much of the training I have received in the past.

Neil Ozonur

Safety Officer

The instructor was very knowledgeable and provided pertinent information above and beyond the questions that were asked.

Johnny Barton

Logistics Coordinator

The course was very informative and presented in a way that was easily understood and remembered. I would recommend this course.

Jeffrey Tierno

Hazmat Shipping Professional

The course was very well structured and covered the material in a clear, concise manner.

Ian Martinez

Hazmat Shipping Professional

I tried other environmental training providers, but they were all sub-standard compared to Lion. I will not stray from Lion again!

Sara Sills

Environmental Specialist

I can't say enough how pleased I was with this course! Everything finally makes sense.

Kim Graham

Lab Manager

The instructor was excellent. They knew all of the material without having to read from a notepad or computer.

Gary Hartzell

Warehouse Supervisor

This is a very informative training compared to others. It covers everything I expect to learn and even a lot of new things.

Quatama Jackson

Waste Management Professional

Best course instructor I've ever had. Funny, relatable, engaging; made it interesting and challenged us as the professionals we are.

Amanda Schwartz

Environmental Coordinator

The price was reasonable, the time to complete the course was manageable, and the flexibility the online training allowed made it easy to complete.

Felicia Rutledge

Hazmat Shipping Professional

Download Our Latest Whitepaper

In most cases, injuries that occur at work are work-related and must be recorded to maintain compliance with OSHA regulations. This report shows you the 9 types of injuries you don’t record.

Latest Whitepaper

By submitting your phone number, you agree to receive recurring marketing and training text messages. Consent to receive text messages is not required for any purchases. Text STOP at any time to cancel. Message and data rates may apply. View our Terms & Conditions and Privacy Policy.