Sunday, May 10, 2020

PHMSA Publishes Harmonization Final Rule – 5-10-20

PHMSA is publishing their latest final rule on harmonizing the Hazardous Material Regulations with various international standards and rules. The rule is being published in Monday’s Federal Register (85 FR 27810-27901) which was available yesterday. The notice of proposed rulemaking (NPRM) for this action was published in November 2018.

This is a lengthy, technical and complicated rulemaking. Trying to summarize this rule in a single blog post (over even a couple of blog posts) is not worth the effort. Anyone shipping hazardous materials is going to have to dig into this document to see if any of the changes being made will affect their operations.

I will mention that there are a wide variety of changes being made to the Hazardous Material Table (49 CFR 172.101). These include:

New entries (mainly new ‘N.O.S’ entries),
Amendments to Column (2) Hazardous Materials Descriptions and Proper Shipping Names,
Amendments to Column (5) Packing Group,
Amendments to Column (7) Special Provisions (2 pages worth of changes),
Amendments to Column (10) Vessel Stowage Requirements (even more extensive), and
Appendix B to § 172.101—List of Marine Pollutants

This final rule is effective May 11th, 2020 except for the changes to 49 CFR 173.21(f) [corrected section number, 5-11-20 08:50 EDT] which take effect on January 2nd, 2023.

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