Rules and Regulations
For more information, please consult this page to ensure safe transportation of your battery shipments or those with items containing batteries.
Dangerous Goods Classes
Due to the volatile nature of lithium ion batteries, the United Nations has declared them a dangerous good. Because of this, there are many additional stipulations to consider when it comes to transporting these goods. Below are the different classes of dangerous goods that the UN has assigned:
- Class 1 – Explosives
- Class 2 – Gases
- Class 3 – Flammable liquids
- Class 4 – Flammable solids or substances that may spontaneously combust or that may emit flammable gases when in contact with water.
- Class 5 – Oxidizing substances and organic peroxides
- Class 6 – Toxic or infectious substances
- Class 7 – Radioactive materials
- Class 8 – Corrosives
- Class 9 – Miscellaneous dangerous goods not classified.
Lithium ion batteries fall under Class 9, as they are not adequately represented by the other classes. It must be marked and represented as such whenever it is being shipped.
The United Nations Economic Comission for Europe, or UNECE, is an important regulating body by which dangerous goods are classified and measured. Though there are variations in the applicable rules and regulations in each country, the UN Recommendations on the Transport of Dangerous Goods serves as a standard template for member states to follow. The Globally Harmonized System of Classification and Labelling of Chemicals (GHS) is a system which lays out the standard for hazardous classification criteria and communication tools, while the Transport of Dangerous Goods (TGD) lays out standards for each mode of transportation. For more information on dangerous goods and its governing body, please visit UNECE's website.
The International Air Transport Association (IATA) is an airline trade association which influences policies and regulations regarding air shipping. They have a wide breadth of documentation and have set many standards for the shipping of dangerous goods by air. To learn more, please visit IATA's website.