Training for Shippers & E-Commerce

Dangerous goods employers must require and ensure that their employees receive training and have been tested in accordance with the Hazardous Materials Regulations (HMR). Training is essential for the shipper to understand the impact and risk of dangerous goods shipments in air transportation.

Training helps to reduce or prevent human error. Federal dangerous goods experts believe that the most frequent explanation for undeclared hazardous materials or dangerous goods shipments is a shipper's lack of knowledge. Recurrent training of employees is critical for the continued safety of the aviation cargo community.

For domestic air transportation, dangerous goods employees must receive training at least every three years and within 90 days of employment or a change in job function (see §172.704). Under the International Civil Aviation Organization (ICAO) Technical Instructions (TI) for the Safe Transport of Dangerous Goods by Air, recurrent training is required every two years.

Training records for the preceding 3 years must be maintained and made available to an authorized official of the Department of Transportation upon request.

Dangerous Goods training must include:

  • general awareness/familiarization;
  • function-specific and modal specific;
  • safety;
  • and security awareness training.

Additional training is required if:

  • you ship dangerous goods under a Special Permit (Special Permit Training); and
  • a security plan is required (In-depth Security Training).

If an employee performs any of the following HAZMAT transportation or pre-transportation functions, they require training:

  • classifies dangerous goods
  • selects dangerous goods packaging
  • fills a dangerous goods package
  • secures a closure on dangerous goods package or inner packaging
  • marks or labels a dangerous goods package
  • prepares a shipping paper
  • provides or maintains emergency response information
  • certifies a dangerous goods shipment on a shipping paper
  • loads, blocks, or braces a dangerous goods pallet, overpack, package, or Unit Load Device (ULD)
  • segregates dangerous goods
  • prepares a hangtag for a ULD containing dangerous goods
  • loads, unloads, or handles dangerous goods
  • designs, manufactures, fabricates, inspects, tests, reconditions, repairs, modifies, or marks dangerous goods packaging
  • prepares dangerous goods for transportation
  • responsible for safety of transporting dangerous goods or operates a vehicle used to transport dangerous goods

Where can I get training?

There are many training resources available. Please note that it is not the FAA's policy to review, approve, or endorse a specific training entity. When training is required, it is the responsibility of each Dangerous Goods employer to ensure that their employees have been properly trained by whatever means that they deem to be appropriate.

Therefore, we recommend you understand the requirements for your specific needs, and locate "dangerous goods by air training" or "hazardous materials by air training" providers that meets your needs.

Government Training Providers

The Department of Transportation's internal training provider, the Transportation Safety Institute (TSI), provides dangerous goods training, and the Pipeline and Hazardous Materials Safety Administration (PHMSA) provides free training modules that cover the General Awareness and Security Training requirements. Keep in mind that PHMSA's free training modules do not include mandatory function-specific, modal-specific, and safety training.

Last updated: Thursday, June 8, 2023