FAA’s Office of Hazardous Materials Safety strives to increase safety in air transportation by preventing hazardous materials accidents and incidents aboard aircraft. Over 100 special agents dedicated to enforcement and educational outreach, ensure compliance with U.S. Department of Transportation (DOT) regulations.

Resource Materials for Air Carriers and Passengers

Regulations for Commercial Transportation

Hazardous materials (a.k.a dangerous goods) sent using commercial transportation must comply with Hazardous Materials Regulations, 49 CFR Parts 171-179. These regulations apply to those who offer, accept, or carry hazardous materials to, from, within, and across the United States.

In Air Commerce

FAA’s special agents conduct inspections and investigations of those who

  • Offer hazardous materials for air transportation (the shippers)
  • Accept and transport the hazardous materials (the air carriers)
  • Compliance and Enforcement

On Freight Forwarders and Repair Stations

Agencies that handle hazardous materials shipments for shippers or carriers, such as freight forwarders and repair stations, are subject to the Hazardous Materials Regulations and FAA inspection. Because these regulations apply to the aircraft cabin as well as the cargo hold, passengers and their baggage are also subject to these rules and FAA jurisdiction.

On Air Carriers

FAA Special Agents inspect U.S.-registered air carriers (certificate holders) for compliance with FAA hazardous materials training requirements found in 14 CFR Part 121 and Part 135. Air carriers in the U.S. cannot carry hazardous materials as cargo until they have an FAA-approved hazardous materials training program. The FAA principal operations inspector assigned to the carrier coordinates this approval.