Lithium Battery Transportation Legislation

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From January 2009 (air transport) and June 2009 (road transport under ADR), shippers transporting lithium batteries by road or air needed to comply with new regulations.

New UN numbers were introduced and more stringent conditions were placed on transporters, even where special provisions applied.

Another new requirement was the need for a telephone number to be displayed where additional information could be obtained

The major changes comprised:

  • The reclassification of lithium batteries into separate UN numbers for Lithium Metal and Lithium Ion Batteries.
  • A new requirement for a telephone number on certain documents and certain exempted packages containing lithium batteries.
  • New packaging requirements.

2015 Changes to the transport of Lithium Metal Batteries as Cargo

At the IATA DGP working group on Lithium Batteries meeting, held in April 2014, the DGP decided to propose that the transport of lithium metal batteries in cargo be restricted to Cargo Aircraft Only. The proposal by the DGP has still to be reviewed by the Air Navigation Council and approved by the ICAO Council. Unless they decide otherwise, these changes will become effective 1 January 2015. For more information click here

New section "IB" for lithium ion (Pl 965 IB) and metal (Pl 968 IB)

  • Batteries that exceed the limits indicated in the tables (965-II and 968-II) above must be shipped as Class 9, but don't require UN specification packagings.
  • Dangerous goods training is required for personnel involved in the transport of IB batteries.
  • Consignment does not require a Shipper’s Declaration provided that alternative written documentation or electronic information describing the contents.
  • Package requires a Class 9 hazard label AND the lithium battery handling label to distinguish it from  other lithium battery packages.
  • A dangerous goods acceptance check is required.
  • A summary NOTOC, similar to that permitted for Dry Ice.
  • Alignment of the net quantity limits is required for lithium batteries packed with and contained in equipment.

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