U.S. Regulations articles

For the first time in 25 years, OSHA fines will increase dramatically in 2016

For the first time in 25 years, OSHA fines will increase dramatically in 2016

On November 2, 2015, the Bipartisan Budget Act of 2015 (H.R. 1314) was signed by President Obama, ensuring that the federal government will have a budget in place for the next two years.  Great news for anyone concerned that budget woes could result in a government shutdown—bad news for OSHA violators at risk for citations.

2018 Rail PTC Extension rolls through Congress

Congress acted to avert confusion and delay on the nation’s rail infrastructure on Wednesday October 28th, 2015 by passing an extension to what had been a looming December 31st, 2015 deadline for railroads to fully implement Positive Train Control, or PTC, control systems on their networks. PTC is a control system that uses Global Positioning

Lithium battery packaging strives to reduce fire risks

“Striving to better, oft we mar what’s well.”  King Lear – William Shakespeare Or to put it in the modern vernacular, “The perfect is the enemy of the good.”  This is the aphorism that came to mind during my presentation of a new and novel Labelmaster packaging solution at a mini-symposium of lithium battery packaging

FAA to develop task force addressing drone registrations

Drone operators in the U.S. are going to be impacted by some big regulatory changes in the near future. Drones, referred to as unmanned aircraft systems (UAS), currently are not to be operated within 5 miles of an airport without notifying the airport operator/control tower, and are limited to an altitude of 400 feet.  The

D.O.T. moves to ban e-Cigs in checked bags

On October 26, 2015, the U.S. Department of Transportation (DOT) Pipeline and Hazardous Materials Safety Administration (PHMSA) issued an interim final rule banning passengers and crew from storing electronic cigarettes (e-cigarettes) and other battery-powered electronic smoking devices in checked bags on passenger airlines.  This final ruling will be effective seven days after the upcoming posting

Congressional politics threaten PTC extension bill

Just when American railroads were perhaps starting to breathe a bit easier about the December 31st, 2015 Positive Train Control (PTC) deadline account the seeming agreement in the House of Representatives about extending the deadline to 2018 under a pending bill HR 3651,  new political roadblocks to passage appear to be arising.  On Wednesday October

IATA Lithium Battery workshop concludes; undeclared and non-compliant shipments pose biggest risks

Last week, I was part of the Labelmaster team that attended the Lithium Battery workshop hosted by IATA in Montreal. For those of us who’ve been following the twists and turns of the regulations governing the air transport of lithium batteries, we might be forgiven for thinking there would be nothing new to see and

Congress advances bill to delay Railroad PTC Mandate

The US House of Representatives has introduced legislation to delay until 2018 the current deadline for US railroads to implement Positive Train Control (PTC) systems on their tracks.  As discussed in a previous blog on the subject,  the nation’s railroads have jointly stated the physical impossibility of completing such an inter-operative system by the end

EPA revises pesticide protection regulations for agricultural workers

On September 28, 2015, the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) announced that they have completed the much anticipated revisions to the Worker Protection Standard (WPS) found in Title 40 of the Code of Federal Regulations (40 CFR) Part 170, ensuring that agricultural workers will have similar health protections as workers in other industries.  The plan to

PHMSA/FAA Meet to Discuss Concerns on Lithium Battery Transport

The US Department of Transportation’s (USDOT) Pipeline and Hazardous Materials Safety Administration (PHMSA) and Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) held a joint public meeting in Washington, DC on September 18th.  The principal topic of discussion was the situation regarding the transport of lithium batteries via aircraft. This past summer, many individual airlines took action to limit the

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