DG Digest: PHMSA published ICR for the transport of radioactive materials in commerce

A consortium of the nation’s twenty largest railroads applied to the FRA for a modification of their PTC systems to improve interoperability. A Union Pacific freight train heads north past distant Mount Rainier in Auburn, Washington on July 11th. Photo © 7/2022 by Nikki Burgess; all rights reserved.

Here we are at mid-July already! Where does the summer go? Hopefully, your workplace is operating its warm weather safety plan effectively. Remember that heat stress and heat stroke can represent serious safety concerns at this time of year, especially for workers outdoors or in spaces that lack air conditioning. Make sure your workplace addresses this seasonal concern!  Meanwhile, here’s the latest regulatory news:


The agency released its latest raft of Special Permit actions. As usual, many of them related to batteries, cylinders, and portable tanks. See the actions at the links below:

2022-14776.pdf (govinfo.gov)

2022-14775.pdf (govinfo.gov)

2022-14774.pdf (govinfo.gov)

The agency published an ICR related to the transport of radioactive materials. This information collection consolidates and describes the information collection provisions in the HMR involving the transportation of these materials in commerce. Information collection requirements for RAM include: documenting testing and engineering evaluations for packages, documenting DOT 7A packages, revalidating foreign competent authority certifications, providing specific written instruction of exclusive use shipment controls, providing written instructions for exclusive use shipment controls, obtaining U.S. competent authority for package design, registering with U.S. competent authority as user of a package, and requesting a U.S. competent authority for a special form of radioactive material. Find out more about this ICR here.

Chemical Hazard and Safety Board

The investigative body will hold its next public meeting on July 29th. This board helps OSHA to determine causes of and mitigating measures to help prevent chemical related accidents in industry. Find more details here.


The National Transportation Safety Board (NTSB) is issuing a final rule, amending the definition of ‘‘Unmanned aircraft accident’’ by removing the weight-based requirement and replacing it with an airworthiness certificate requirement. The weight threshold is no longer an appropriate criterion because unmanned aircraft systems (UAS) under 300 lbs. are operating in high-risk environments, such as beyond line-of-sight and over populated areas. The amended definition will allow the NTSB to be notified of and quickly respond to UAS events with safety significance. Since the notice of proposed rulemaking (NPRM), the agency considered comments and as a result eliminated the ‘‘airworthiness approval,’’ while keeping ‘‘airworthiness certification.’’  This rule is effective August 15, 2022. See more details here.


The agency published a proposed ICR related to the issuance of standardized RCRA site permits. This system replaced more customized permitting with a uniform method. Find out more about this ICR here:


The nation’s twenty largest railroads have submitted a joint request to the FRA to allow for a modification to their Positive Train Control Systems (PTCS) that will, they contend, improve interoperability and safety. FRA must now consider the request. See the full details here.


If you use an online version of the IMDG Code, the IMO has created a tutorial booklet to help such users navigate the e-version more effectively. The tutorial is a free resource. Find it here:

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