The Pipeline and Hazardous Materials Safety Administration (PHMSA) has issued a Safety Advisory, 79 Fed. Reg. 64646 (October 30, 2014), to provide guidance on the U.S. Department of Transportation’s Hazardous Materials Regulations (HMR), 49 CFR, parts 171–180, for persons who prepare, offer, and transport materials contaminated or suspected of being contaminated with the Ebola virus.

The Advisory indicates that to “transport materials contaminated or suspected of being contaminated with the Ebola virus, a special permit may be necessary to allow for a variance of the HMR packaging requirements to handle the larger volume of contaminated waste generated during the treatment of Ebola patients.” PHMSA had recently issued a non-site specific special permit (Special Permit DOT–SP 16279) to certain waste haulers, which authorizes the transportation in commerce of waste contaminated with or suspected of being contaminated with the Ebola virus for disposal.

The Advisory highlights these guidance documents and resources for Ebola handlers, transporters, and disposers:

Note that waste generated from the treatment of a patient contaminated or suspected of being contaminated with the Ebola virus transported by a Federal, state, or local government employee to a disposal facility is not subject to the HMR. “DOT, however, recommends that Federal, state, or local governments comply with appropriate safety requirements provided in the HMR to ensure the safe transportation of waste contaminated or suspected of being contaminated with the Ebola virus.”