August 16, 2017: (SA) FRA Addressing Electrode-Induced Rail Pitting From Pressure Electric Welding

The Federal Railroad Administration will be issuing a safety advisory to inform railroads, contractors, and rail welders that there is a  potential for electrode induced rail pitting and fatigue cracking during the pressure electric rail welding process.
Upon concluding its investigation, FRA feels as a result of improper electrode contact to the rail during welding can result in electrode induced pitting which can lead to fatigue fracture and potential rail failure.
Interested parties may submit comments on the safety advisory until October 16, 2017.

Docket No. FRA–2017–0074; Notice No. 1

April 24, 2017: (SA) Use of DOT Specification 39 Cylinders for Liquefied Flammable Compressed Gas

PHMSA issued a revised safety advisory regarding DOT-39 cylinders that exceed 75 cubic inches. The advisory states these cylinders should not be transported or filled with liquefied flammable compressed cyclopropane, ethane, ethylene, or liquifed petroleum gases.

Docket No. PHMSA–2016–0078; Notice No. 2016–14

December 13, 2016: (SA) Hazardous Materials: Use of DOT Specification 39 Cylinders for Liquefied Flammable Compressed Gas

The Pipeline and Hazardous Materials Safety Administration issued a safety advisory to offerors and users of DOT-39 cylinders. The advisory states that the cylinders with an internal volume that exceeds 75 cubic inches should not be filled with liquefied flammable compressed gas.

Docket No. PHMSA-2016-0078; Notice No. 2016-14

November 28, 2016: (SA) Identification and Mitigation of Hazards Through Job Safety Briefings and Hazard Recognition Strategies

The Federal Railroad Administration issued Safety Advisory 2016-02 regarding the number of fatalities of railroad workers and contractors that occur during activities that fall outside the scope of FRA’s safety regulations but that are still under OSHA regulations.
FRA wants to remind railroads workers and contractors that it is important to identify hazardous conditions at job sites, conduct thorough safety briefings, and discuss any hazardous conditions. FRA urges railroads to take appropriate actions to mitigate those conditions. In addition, the safety advisory reminds railroad workers and contractors that OSHA’s job safety regulations may still apply to certain activities and recommends hazard recognition strategies.

 Safety Advisory 2016–02

October 20, 2016: Withdrawal of Safety Advisory Notice No. 2016-18

Effective October 15, 2016, the safety advisory notice regarding Samsung Galaxy Note 7 devices (no. 2016-18) will be withdrawn. It will be replaced with an emergency restrictive/prohibition order barring such devices from being transported via aircraft.

Docket Number PHMSA–2016–0110; Notice No. 2016–21

September 22, 2016: (SA) Hazardous Materials: Damaged, Defective, Recalled Lithium Cells or Batteries or Portable Electronic Devices

PHMSA has issued a safety advisory concerning the transportation of damaged, defective, or recalled lithium cells or batteries, and  portable electronic devices aboard aircraft.
Passengers are being asked to turn the device off, disconnect from any charging equipment, disable any application that may cause the phone to reactivate such as the alarm clock, protect the power button to avoid the device accidentally being turned on, and keep the device in your carry-on luggage rather than in checked baggage.

Docket No. PHMSA–2016–0110; Notice No. 2016–18

August 3, 2016: (SA) Safety Advisory Related to the Possession and Use of Battery-Powered Portable Electronic Smoking Devices in or Around Commercial Motor Vehicles

FMCSA has issued a Safety Advisory to owners and operators of commercial motor vehicles regarding electronic smoking devices. The use of battery-powered portable devices has caused explosions, serious personal injury, and fires. Explosions were frequently caused by the ejection of a burning battery case or other components of the portable smoking device coming in contact with flammable or combustible materials. While regulations do not specifically address any potential risks involving such devices, motor carriers and drivers are being asked to be cautious and use good judgement when using, storing, or charging these devices while loading, unloading, or operating vehicles transporting hazardous materials.

Safety Advisory Related to the Possession and Use of Battery-Powered Portable Electronic Smoking Devices in or Around Commercial Motor Vehicles

May 27, 2016: (SA) Safety Advisory Issued Regarding TYTAL Cargo Tank Motor Vehicles

A safety advisory has been issued to owners and operators of TYTAL cargo tank motor vehicles with capacities of 8,400, 8,717, and 10,500 gallons. These CTMVs, which are primarily used to transport Petroleum Crude Oil (UN1267),  are not compliant with Hazardous Materials Regulations and do not meet DOT 407 specification requirements. The 8,400 and 8,717 gallon cargo tanks have proven to provide inadequate damage protection during an accident. 10,500 gallon cargo tanks have also been shown to provide inadequate damage protection during an accident and are inadequate in venting capacity of pressure relief systems.
TYTAL has informed their customers of the deficiencies and is providing free repairs. FMCSA has advised owners and operators that these cargo tanks are not authorized for transporting hazardous materials until repaired in compliance with the HMR. FMCSA will initiate enforcement actions against any owner or operator found to be transporting hazardous materials in a non-compliant cargo tank as of June 1, 2016.

 Safety Advisory: Immediate Repair and Retesting of Cargo Tank Motor Vehicles Manufactured by Trailers Y Tanques De Aluminio (TYTAL)

April 20, 2016: (SA) Immediate Re-inspection and Retesting of Certain Cargo Tank Motor Vehicles Required

A safety advisory has been issued by FMCSA to inform owners and operators of some cargo tanks that their tanks may have been improperly inspected and tested. FMCSA urges owners and operators who received inspections from April 2011 through March 2016 by either H&W Tank Testing, CT # 8083, Ohatchee Alabama or Christopher Humphries, CT # 13131, Jacksonville Alabama to have their tanks re-inspected and retested.
Prior to operating any cargo tank vehicle that has been covered by the safety advisory documentation showing that the required inspection and testing has been completed needs to be provided to FMCSA.

Additional Information on Safety Advisory

April 7, 2016: (SA) ICAO Lithium Ion Battery Prohibition Safety Advisory

The Pipeline and Hazardous Materials Administration issued a safety advisory concerning the transportation of lithium ion batteries on aircraft. The purpose of the safety advisory is to inform those transporting lithium batteries of the actions taken by ICAO in order to enhance safety during transport.
The FAA Tech Centers’ research has highlighted several safety concerns.
Some of those concerns include the fire suppression capabilities not being strong enough on an aircraft to effectively handle the heat and flames that would be occur should the batteries catch fire and the flammable gases from a lithium battery fire may cause a catastrophic explosion.
As a result of this research and recommendations made by ICAO the Technical Instructions for the Safe Transport of Dangerous Goods by Air 2015- 2016 edition has been updated to include the prohibition of lithium batteries as cargo on passenger aircraft that is not either contained in or packed with equipment. Lithium batteries must not exceed 30% of the rated capacity on cargo aircraft, and a limit on the number of lithium ion and lithium metal batteries that can be transported together on cargo aircraft.

Docket No. PHMSA-2016-0014 Notice No. 2016-05

March 17, 2016: (SA) Movement of Roadway Maintenance Machines Over Highway-Rail Grade Crossings

FRA has issued a safety advisory to heighten awareness around railroads, railroad contractors, and respective employees. The safety advisory follows FRA’s investigation into the fatal accident that occurred when an on-track roadway maintenance machine traveling on main track collided with a motor vehicle at a highway-rail grade crossing.

Safety Advisory No. 2016–01

December 11, 2015: Safety Alert – Shotgun Shell Found In Coupler Locking Pin

SAFETY ALERT – December 11, 2015

Please post this message in your department for employees who do not have computer access.
Shotgun Shell Found In Coupler Locking Pin A shotgun shell was recently found placed in the locking pin of the coupler on the QGRY in Quebec. This type of mischief has potentially fatal consequences and serves as a reminder that employees must always be aware of their surroundings, perform thorough equipment inspections and report any suspicious activity immediately to CP police for further investigation.

Situational awareness, knowledge of equipment and compliance with safety procedures are key elements in performing tasks safety. Should you encounter a similar condition as described above, please protect the hazard and report it to your supervisor immediately.

December 1, 2015: (SA) Safety Advisory Issued

The Federal Railroad Administration has issued a safety advisory to notify freight railroads about the circumstances of the head-on collision at Hoxie, AR. and to discusses the risks that automated inputs that reset alerter warning timing cycles pose. A few of Union Pacific Railroad’s locomotives that are equipped with alerters had the horn sequencer reset without direct engineer action which reduces the alerters’ effectiveness. Union Pacific Railroad has taken steps to modify its locomotives in order to resolve the issue.
Currently, FRA is not aware of any additional incidents concerning locomotives that are equipped with alerters  that reset without direct engineer action. However, it is urging all freight railroads to review the operations of any locomotive equipped with alerters and modify them as needed to ensure no system resets the alerter warning timing cycle without direct engineer action.

Safety Advisory 2015-06

November 9, 2015: (SA) Addressing Rail Head Surface Conditions Identified During the Internal Rail Inspection Process

As a direct result of the derailment in West Virginia earlier this year the Federal Railroad Administration is issuing a safety advisory in an effort to remind track owners, track maintenance personnel, and rail flaw detection equipment operators how important it is that everyone comply with rail management programs and engineering procedures dealing with rail head surface conditions during rail flaw and track inspections. FRA is also reminding track owners to make sure rail flaw detection equipment operators are trained properly.
The derailment in West Virginia was caused by a broken rail, which resulted from a vertical split head. FRA believes this derailment could have, and should have, been prevented. Rail flaw detection equipment indicated flaw conditions at that location in December 2014 and January 2015. Unfortunately, the operator did not perform the on ground examination of the defect because he felt the reading was a false positive. Had the operator understood and identified the indications for various rail flaw conditions he would have reported the defect to the track owner. At that time the owner would have repaired or replaced the rail which would have prevented the derailment.

Safety Advisory No. 2015–05


October 8, 2015: (SA) FAA Issues Safety Alert Concerning Lithium Batteries

The Federal Aviation Administration released a few strongly recommended actions for certificate holders regarding passengers carrying lithium batteries in their checked luggage.  Certificate holders should ensure all personnel handling passenger luggage are aware that they are required to report all incidents involving fire, rupture, explosion or heat sufficient to be dangerous to either packaging or personal safety that occurs as a result of a battery or battery powered device. Make sure the passengers are being informed that spare lithium batteries are not permitted in any of their checked bags. Evaluate the training and communication protocols that your company will follow in the event of an incident involving lithium batteries.
In addition to these recommendations, the FAA also urges certificate holders to ensure that lithium batteries that are in passengers carry on luggage do not exceed the allowable size or quantity permitted by the federal regulations, make sure spare batteries do not come in contact with metal while in the passengers bag, and ensure each battery is individually protected to prevent short circuits.

SAFO 15010

April 29, 2015: (SA) Hazardous Materials Safety Advisory – Unauthorized Certification of Compressed Gas Cylinders

PHMSA has issued a safety advisory concerning Liberty Industrial Gases and Welding Supplies Inc., also known as Liberty Industrial Gases and Welding Supply, Inc., located in Brooklyn New York. Liberty Industrial marked ICC, DOT Specification and DOT Special Permit high pressure compressed gas cylinders as authorized for hazardous materials transportation. They did not, however, properly test the cylinders and do not have authorization to do so.

If any of these cylinders have been taken or received from Liberty Industrial Gases and Welding Supplies any time between April 1998 and October 2014 they may not have been tested properly as required by the HMR. They are not authorized for filling of hazardous materials until they have been properly tested by an  individual or company who has been authorized to re-qualify DOT Specification and DOT Special Permit cylinders.

Cylinders described in this safety advisory notice that are filled with atmospheric gas should be vented or otherwise safely discharged. Cylinders that are filled with a material other than an atmospheric gas should not be vented but instead should be safely discharged.

List of Authorized Re-Qualifiers


Hazardous Materials: Safety Advisory-Unauthorized Certification of Compressed Gas Cylinders


April 17, 2015: (SA) FRA Issues Mechanical Inspection Safety Advisory

The Federal Railroad Administration has issued a Safety Advisory that recommends enhancing the mechanical safety of trains that are transporting large quantities of flammable liquids. FRA is recommending the use of highly qualified individuals to conduct both the brake and mechanical inspections. In addition, FRA recommends the industry reduce the impact threshold levels that are currently used for wayside detectors that measure wheel impacts to ensure the wheel integrity of tank cars in those trains. In an effort to continue ensuring the highest level of safety on the Nation's Railroads FRA may modify this Safety Advisory, issue additional safety advisories or take other appropriate action deemed necessary.  

Mechanical Inspection Safety Advisory


April 23, 2015: (SA) Information Requirements For Transportation of Class 3 Flammable Liquids

A safety advisory is being issued  by FRA and PHMSA as a reminder to railroads that are operating a "high hazard flammable train" (HHFT) that in the event of an accident PHMSA and/or FRA personnel may require certain information during the course of the investigation.

— and thus should be provided as expeditiously as possible, upon request:

  •  Information on the train consist, including the train number, locomotive(s),locomotives as distributed power, end-of-train device information, number andposition of tank cars in the train, tank car reporting marks, and the tank carspecifications and relevant attributes3 of the tank cars in the train.
  • Waybill (origin and destination) information
  • The Safety Data Sheet(s) (SDS), or any other document used to provide comprehensive emergency response and incident mitigation information.
  • Results of any product testing undertaken prior to transportation that was used to properly characterize the Class 3 flammable liquids for transportation (initial testing).
  • Results from any analysis of product samples (taken prior to being offered into transportation) from tank car(s) involved in the derailment.
  • Date of acceptance as required to be noted on shipping papers under 49 CFR §174.24.
  • If a flammable liquid is involved, the type of liquid and the name and location of the company extracting the material.4
  • The identification of the company having initial testing performed (sampling and analysis of material) and information on the lab (if external) conducting the analysis.
  • Name and location of the company transporting the material from well head to loading facility or terminal.
  • Name and location of the company that owns and that operates the terminal or loading facility that loaded the product for rail transportation.
  • Name of the Railroad(s) handling the tank car(s) at any time from point of origin to destination and a timeline of handling changes between railroads.

A high hazard train can either be a train that is comprised of 20 or more tank cars that are loaded with Class 3 flammable liquid in a continuous block or a train comprised of 35 or more tank cars loaded with Class 3 flammable liquids across the entire train.

Hazardous Materials: Information Requirements Related to the Transportation of Trains Carrying Specified Volumes of Flammable Liquids

January 22, 2014 (SA) FAA Issues Alert on E-Cigarettes

The FAA has issued an alert for passengers who travel with e-cigarettes. There have been several incidents recently involving e-cigarettes in checked baggage that have over heated and caused a fire on the aircraft. These devices can over heat when heating element is accidently activated or left on. It is now recommended that e-cigarettes not be permitted in checked baggage and should only be carried in the cabin of the aircraft.

Click here to read the complete safety advisory

November 28, 2014: (SA) Refilling Single-Use Cylinders

PHMSA has recently become aware of the adaptors that are promising to allow refilling of DOT 39 specification gas cylinders. Unfortunately DOT 39 cylinders are not reusable and have been manufactured as one-time use only. Federal law prohibits anyone from refilling these cylinders or transporting cylinders that have been refilled. Anyone doing so is subject to a $500,000 penalty and five years in prison. This warning is posted on the DOT 39 cylinders.
PHMSA stated “We strongly recommend that the general public refrain from refilling DOT 39 cylinders because of the one-time use design of these cylinders, and the purchase and use of any adaptor sold as a means to refill DOT 39 cylinders creates a potential risk of fire, explosion, serious injury and property damage.”
To read the safety advisory please visit Hazardous Cargo Bulletin