DG Digest: One February 29th Every 4 Years Means Everything Happens That Day!

Leap Year’s Day brings with it a plethora of DG news to start the week:

Transport Canada

Released a request for response to proposed amendments to its own Dangerous Goods regulations. The new amendments cover, in general terms, training requirements, further efforts to harmonize US and Canadian efforts in the DG field, and a very interesting proposal regarding a concept called “dynamic referencing,” which if used properly could help with the age-old bugaboo of which revision of any particular document to use while considering a regulation incorporating it by reference.  Interested?  Click here 

United States EPA

USEPA released a proposal to improve it RMP or Risk Management Program requirements for Chemical Manufacturers. Among the new ideas:

  • Requiring the consideration of safer technologies and alternatives by including the assessment of Inherently Safer Technologies and Designs in the Process Hazard Assessment;
  • Requiring third party audits and root cause analysis to identify process safety improvements for accident prevention;
  • Enhancing  emergency planning and preparedness requirements to help ensure coordination between facilities and local communities;
  • Strengthening emergency response planning to help ensure emergency response capabilities are available to mitigate the effect of a chemical accident;
  • Improving the ability of LEPCs (Local Emergency Planning Committees) and local emergency response officials to better prepare for emergencies both individually and with one another; and
  • Improving access to information to help the public understand the risks at RMP facilities
  • For further info on the RMP, click here 

USEPA announced the availability of a $26 million USD grant program aimed at improving diesel engine emissions in several major urban areas. Diesel exhaust can contain tiny soot particles especially troublesome to person afflicted with asthma or other breathing difficulties.  Grant details here

U.S. EPA and Canadian Government: USEPA and the government of Canada announced a new program aimed at cutting phosphorus in Lake Erie by 40% under the current levels. This may impact chemical manufacturers; phosphorus is a common product found in many chemical mixtures, notably fertilizers lends.  More info  

ICAO Lithium Battery Ban

As was forecast, the ICAO General Council voted to adopt the proposed ban on Lithium Ion Batteries as cargo on passenger aircraft as of April 1st. Please see the detailed write up of the extensive changes going into effect on April 1, 2016

Coast Guard Withdraws Proposed Standard

In news of interest to petroleum producers, the US Coast Guard withdrew a proposed standard policy for carriers of waste water from some petroleum drilling activities involving shale gas waste. Instead, such actions will continue to be considered only on a case basis.  See the news here


The FMCSA took action establishing a newly expanded Commercial Activity Zone at the border with Mexico located in El Paso, Texas. This allows for expanded economic activity by motor carriers at the site, with corresponding oversight by RFMCSA.  See the news here

NRC Packaging Request for Information

The Nuclear Regulatory Commission issued a request for information regarding the use of packaging for and the associated transportation of radioactive hazardous materials in Type A packages. Here’s your story

FRA News

Federal Railroad Administration announced the availability of a new website where states and municipalities can request federal inspections of railroad bridges and viaducts in their jurisdictions; this all part of the revamped and expanded efforts at transport safety compliance being aimed at this vital industry. Details

U.S. Department of State

The US State Department will hold a public meeting in Washington, DC on March 22nd in preparation for the annual International Maritime Organization Conference in the United Kingdom in early April. Details of the preparatory meeting can be found here

For more information about these regulatory updates, please contact Nikki Burgess, Labelmaster’s staff regulatory specialist.

Labelmaster is a full service provider of goods and services for the Hazardous Materials and Dangerous Goods professional, shippers, transport operators, and EH&S providers. See our full line of solutions at www.labelmaster.com.

Image Credit: A new program allowing municipal and state governments to request federal inspections of railroad bridges may impact such carriers.  A Norfolk Southern passenger special is seen crossing Lake Decatur in central Illinois in 2009. (© 11/2009 by Nikki Burgess; all rights reserved.)