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Canada bans shipments of lithium metal batteries on passenger flights

The Canadian Minister of Transport Lisa Raitt announced a suite of amendments to Canada’s Transportation of Dangerous Goods Regulations (TDGR), including a ban on transporting lithium metal batteries as cargo on passenger flights in Canada. The new ban does not apply to Li metal batteries already contained in devices, nor to Li-ion batteries. The US has already banned the transportation of lithium metal batteries as cargo on passenger flights.

In 2014, the International Civil Aviation Organization (ICAO) adopted a ban on the shipment of lithium metal batteries as cargo aboard passenger aircraft. The main concern is that if ignited, they can cause any nearby batteries to overheat and catch fire as well. Most passenger airlines in Canada have already voluntarily banned lithium metal batteries as cargo.

The Canadian prohibition comes into effect on 1 January 2015, to comply with the ICAO ban.

Other updates to the TDGR include:

  • Incorporating Protective Direction (PD) 33 into the TGDR. Introduced in April 2014, PD33 ordered rail shippers of ethanol, petroleum crude oil, gasoline, and other petroleum products to have an approved Emergency Response Assistance Plan (ERAP) in place to ensure proper emergency response in the event of an incident or release involving these flammable liquids.

  • Adding Emergency Response Assistance Plan (ERAP) requirements for petroleum sour crude oil and Alcohols N.O.S. (typically used to classify ethanol in the US), which were not previously included under PD33.

  • New United Nations (UN) product numbers for petroleum sour crude oil and biomedical waste.



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