PHMSA Issues Emergency HMR Waivers to Aid Hurricane Recovery

Posted on November 5,2018 by Roger Marks

Hurricane-recovery.jpgThe US DOT Pipeline and Hazardous Materials Safety Administration (PHMSA) issued Hazardous Materials Regulations (HMR) Emergency Waivers last month to streamline hurricane recovery in Georgia and Florida.

In effect until November 15, 2018, these emergency HMR waivers apply to persons in emergency or disaster areas working under the direction of State or Federal agencies charged with leading the recovery effort from Hurricane Michael.

PHMSA HMR Waiver #7
This HMR waiver applies to “persons conducting operations under the direction of EPA Region 4 or the US Coast Guard (USGC) Seventh or Eighth Districts within the Hurricane Michael emergency area of Florida.”

PHMSA HMR Waiver #8
This HMR waiver applies to persons conducting operations under the direction of EPA or USCG in the Hurricane Michael emergency area of Georgia.

PHMSA’s Authority to Grant Hazmat Waivers

Under 49 CFR 1.97(b)(3), PHMSA is authorized to waive compliance with any part of the HMR, provided that the waiver is:
 
  1. In the public interest.
  2. Not inconsistent with the safety of hazmat transport.
  3. Necessary to facilitate safe movement of hazardous materials into, from, and within an area of major disaster or emergency.
In 2017, PHMSA issued emergency HMR waivers in the wake of storms Maria, Harvey, and Irma.

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