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DOT hazard class ORM-D phased out

January 8, 2021
As a reminder, the U.S. Department of Transportation hazard class ORM-D (Other Regulated Material) expired Dec. 31. ORM-D is a hazard class specific to the United States. 
ORM-D is widely used for consumer commodities which are hazardous materials subject to the DOT Hazardous Material Regulations but which present a limited hazard during transportation due to their form, quantity and packaging. DOT defines a consumer commodity as a material that is packaged and distributed in a form intended or suitable for retail sales for consumption by individuals for purposes of personal care or household use. 
Common examples of ORM-D materials include household cleaners, drain openers, and aerosol cans.
The DOT’s original rulemaking phased out the ORM-D class for air shipments by Dec. 31, 2012, and ground shipments by Dec. 31, 2013. After industry challenged the deadline for ground shipments, DOT extended the deadline to Dec. 31, 2020.
The DOT phased out the ORM-D classification in order to align U.S. regulations with international transportation standards, specifically the Limited Quantity exceptions. The Limited Quantity exceptions for highway shipments are very similar to the ORM-D requirements. 
Limited Quantity shipments by highway are also exempt from labeling and placarding requirements, as well as from shipping paper requirements provided the materials are not hazardous wastes, hazardous substances, or marine pollutants. Shippers and carriers of Limited Quantity shipments must receive full DOT hazardous materials training.
Because hazardous waste transporters use public roads, highways, rails, and waterways, regulations for container specifications, labeling, marking, and placarding primarily are developed by the DOT, with input from the EPA.
The federal DOT was established by an act of Congress in 1966 as a federal Cabinet department concerned with all facets of transportation: cars, trains, trucks, planes, boats — anything with wheels or wings or a keel — and especially if hauling hazmat is involved.