Fireworks Shippers, Distributors, and Carriers: Did You Know?
Consumer fireworks are considered hazardous materials (hazmat) Division 1.4G explosives, and their safe transport is regulated by the Hazardous Materials Regulations (HMR) (see 49 Code of Federal Regulations (CFR) Parts 171-180).
FIREWORKS SHIPMENTS MUST:
○ Include a Shipping Paper that contains the following required information:
■ UN I.D. number prescribed for the explosive materials;
■ Proper shipping name prescribed for the explosive materials;
■ Hazard class or division;
■ Packing group;
■ For Class 1 materials, the quantity must be the net explosive mass;
■ EX number must be placed on either packaging or shipping paper;
■ The number and type of packages must be included; as well as
■ Emergency contact and telephone number (see 49 CFR Part 172, Subparts C and G).
○ Be properly loaded, blocked, and braced to restrict movement in the vehicle, and be protected against ignition sources (see 49 CFR Part 177, Subpart B), and
○ Be handled by professionals that have been trained in components specified in the HMR (i.e., general awareness/familiarization, function-specific, safety, and security training) (see 49 CFR Part 172, Subpart H); for
example, those who operate and load/unload the vehicle.
For Division 1.4G fireworks 1,001 lbs., or more, gross weight, on a vehicle:
○ Driver must have a CDL that includes a hazmat endorsement (see 49 CFR 177.804 and 49 CFR Part 383).
○ Vehicles must be placarded on each side, and each end, with “EXPLOSIVES 1.4” placards (see 49 CFR Part 172, Subpart F).
○ Shippers/carriers must both develop/implement security plans including assessments of possible transport risks to fireworks, and measures to address risks. At a minimum, security plans must address personnel security, en route security, and unauthorized access (see 49 CFR Part 172, Subpart I).
○ Transporters/carriers must hold a current hazmat registration certificate issued by PHMSA (see 49 CFR Part 107, Subpart G).
Persons found to be in violation of the HMR may be subject to significant civil penalties, criminal fines, and imprisonment. Maximum penalties can range up to $110,000, per violation, for a civil penalty; and $500,000 and 10 years in prison for a criminal penalty!
For more information on the safe transport of consumer fireworks:
○ Consult the HMR.
○ Detailed information/guidance is available on DOT’s Hazmat Safety website: www.phmsa.dot.gov/hazmat.
○ Specific questions can be addressed to the Hazardous Materials Information Center: 1-800-467-4922 or (202) 366-4488.