RSPA issues HM-223 rule on hazmat transportation definitions
Oct 31, 2003 12:00 PM
Information about the preparation for transportation, loading, transportation, unloading, and storage of hazardous materials has been further defined by the Research and Special Programs Administration (RSPA), according to information published in the Federal Register October 29.
RSPA has issued the HM-223 final rule (49 CFR Parts 171, 173, 174, 175, 176, 177, and 178) in an effort to define the functions and how the hazardous materials regulations apply to them.
Specifically, RSPA lists regulated functions to include activities related to the design, manufacture, and qualification of packaging represented as qualified for use in the transportation of hazardous materials; pre-transportation functions; and transportation functions (movement, loading, unloading, and storage incidental to the movement).
RSPA has determined that non-regulated functions include rail and motor vehicle movements solely within a contiguous facility where public access is restricted; transportation in a transport vehicle or conveyance operated by a federal, state, or local government employee solely for government purposes; transportation by an individual for non-commercial purposes in a private motor vehicle; and any matter subject to US postal laws and regulations.
RSPA points out in the ruling that the Occupational Health and Safety Administration (OSHA) shares jurisdiction for certain aspects of the loading and unloading operations.
The rule states that "it is important to note that facilities at which pre-transportation or transportation functions are performed must comply with OSHA and state or local regulations applicable to physical structures--for example, noise and air quality control standards, emergency preparedness, fire codes, and local zoning requirements.
"Facilities may also have to comply with applicable state and local regulations for hazardous materials handling and storage operations.
"Facilities at which pre-transportation or transportation functions are performed may also be subject to Environmental Protection Agency and other OSHA regulations. For example, facilities may be subject to EPA's risk management; community right-to-know; hazardous waste tracking and disposal; and spill prevention, control and countermeasure requirements, and OSHA's process safety management and emergency preparedness requirements.
"Similarly, facilities at which pre-transportation functions are performed may also be subject to regulations of the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms, and Explosives (ATF) concerning the handling of explosives.
The rule goes into effect October 1, 2004. For further information, contact Susan Gorsky at 202-366-8553 or Donna O'Berry at 202-366-4400.
To see the rule in the Federal Register, click here.