Happy Halloween everyone! Make it a safe and memorable family holiday. Let’s get to this week’s issue of “treats” in the world of Dangerous Goods.
Rail Tax News
Hazmat shippers by rail to, from, or through the State of California are breathing a sigh of at least temporary relief after a Federal Court issued an injunction barring the collection of a $45/car fee for rail cars laden with any amount of hazardous materials in California. A lawsuit jointly filed last summer by Class One railroads Union Pacific and BNSF seeks to overturn the fee based on federal primacy over interstate commerce. The temporary injunction issued last Friday appears to indicate that federal courts are taking a view in favor of that contention. See more here
PHMSA spent last week dealing with, among other things, a raft of special permit actions. Apparently the end of this year is going to find them busy receiving new applications. See the action in these links:
Joint OSHA/PHMSA Meeting News
- On Tuesday, November 15, 2016, OSHA will conduct a public meeting to discuss proposals in preparation for the 32nd session of the United Nations Sub-Committee of Experts on the Globally Harmonized System of Classification and Labeling of Chemicals (UNSCEGHS) to be held December 7 through December 9, 2016 in Geneva, Switzerland. OSHA plans to consider the comments and information gathered at this public meeting when developing the U.S. Government positions for the UNSCEGHS meeting. Also, on Tuesday, November 15, 2016, the Department of Transportation (DOT), Pipeline and Hazardous Materials Safety Administration (PHMSA) will conduct a public meeting (See Docket No. PHMSA–2016–0114 Notice No. 16–19) to discuss proposals in preparation for the 50th session of the United Nations Sub-Committee of Experts on the Transport of Dangerous Goods (UNSCE TDG) to be held November 27 to December 6, 2016, in Geneva, Switzerland. During this meeting, PHMSA is also requesting comments relative to potential new work items that may be considered for inclusion in its international agenda. Here are the details
- If the formal meeting above isn’t your style; how about an “informal discussion” about similar matters? OSHA intends to have such a meeting in consonance with the standard proceedings. Here’s the link to let you in
The FAA has issued this notice to advise the public of a meeting of the Twenty Sixth RTCA SC–225 Rechargeable Lithium Batteries and Battery Systems Plenary. The meeting will be held November 29 to December 01, 2016, 9:00 a.m.–5:00 p.m. Here’s your details
The agency issued a notice stating that the sundry iterations of the revised Driver’s Medical Exam Form and Card/Certificate featuring dates of revision ranging over several months last year are all acceptable for use until current stocks are exhausted. There had been some concern in the motor truck industry that only forms bearing the most recent revision date would be acceptable. See the notice here
- In a major action affecting generators and particularly international shippers of hazardous waste, the agency announced a set of rules actions that will significantly change the way the category is dealt with, from actual shipment guidelines to reporting of and public accessibility to records. If you import or export hazardous waste, you should be certain to study this new set of regulatory actions very carefully—it is going to change the way that you do business. Here’s your portal to all the news
- The agency announced new assistance and guidelines to help planners cope with stormwater runoff, which is a major issue for businesses located in controlled waste treatment districts and other environmentally sensitive areas. The agency hopes the new guidance will lead users to more effective and cost-efficient compliance with what can be a complex set of rules
- EPA also released a new Environmental Justice Plan. The plan is intended to allow disadvantaged communities more input to industrial and environmental planning in their areas. See the plan here
The agency announced the receipt of Norfolk Southern Railroad’s PTC Implementation plan. The major eastern carrier becomes the latest Class One to submit the required plan to the FRA in reference to meeting the mandated December 2018 PTC implementation deadline nationwide for lines carrying hazardous materials and/or passenger traffic. See the plan link here
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