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Organizations Responsible for Regulating Transport of Hazardous Materials

In the United States
  • The US Department of Transportation (DOT) establishes regulations and training requirements for transport of hazardous materials by land, water, or air within, from, or through the United States. These requirements are referred to as the Hazardous Materials Regulation and can be found in the Code of Federal Regulations (CFR), 49 CFR Parts 100-185.
  • The US Postal Service (USPS) regulates transport of materials that are mailed to, from, or within the US. The USPS regulations are found in 39 CFR.
  • The US Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) through the Bloodborne Pathogens Standard. regulates the packaging and labeling of specimens that may contain biohazardous materials.
  • The International Civil Aviation Organization (ICAO) is an agency of the United Nations that recommends practices for civil air transport internationally and publishes detailed instructions for safe international transport of dangerous goods by air.
  • The International Air Transport Association (IATA) is an airline membership organization. IATA regulations must be followed, if the hazardous material will be shipped internationally on a member airline. IATA regulations are at least as stringent as ICAO regulations, and are therefore often used by shippers who package and transport dangerous goods, regardless of the air carrier. Note that IATA rules must be followed when shipping via FedEx.
It is the responsibility of all workers who are involved in the packaging and shipping of hazardous materials to be aware of regulatory changes that may occur. These resources are available to offer assistance with understanding current regulations:
  • DOT 1-800-467-4922
  • IATA 514-390-6770
  • FedEx Dangerous Goods Hotline 1-800-463-3339, say "Dangerous Goods" or press "81"