PHMSA Considers “Electronic Risk Communication”

Written by

Marybeth Luczak, Editor-in-Chief

(Photograph courtesy of TrinityRail)

The Pipeline and Hazardous Materials Safety Administration (PHMSA) has issued a Request for Information (RFI) on the potential use of electronic hazard communication as an alternative to physical paper documents.

PHMSA July 11 reported in the Federal Register that he is considering revising the Hazardous Materials Regulations (HMR) “to facilitate and promote the use of electronic risk communication,” which he described as “shipping documents, trains, manifests of dangerous goods, pilot-in-command notifications, and emergency response information, and associated administrative documentation, including special permits (SP), Department of Transportation (DOT) approvals and registrations.

HMR currently requires hazard communication to be maintained as physical printed documents during transport, according to PHMSA. “However, widely adopted technologies could complement or replace the existing paper-based risk communication system and provide opportunities for improved emergency response and monitoring, as well as increased efficiency in network operations. transportation,” he explained.

PHMSA invites input to help determine “the most effective mechanisms and potential barriers to implementing electronic risk communication,” including security and privacy. Responses are expected no later than September 9 from emergency response and inspection organizations; organizations that offer, transport or facilitate the movement of hazardous materials; and trade associations, unions, and other organizations that represent businesses and workers in the areas of emergency response, hazardous materials inspection, transportation of hazardous materials, and technology.

Download the RFI below:

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