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May 21

May 21, 2012


Mailing Lithium Batteries—Domestic and International


Earlier last week two final rule Federal Registers were posted on the Federal Register website. The first, Mailings of Lithium Batteries, was posted on Monday, May 14 and revises the Domestic Mail Manual (DMM®) to remove all references regarding the mailing of lithium batteries internationally. The second, Outbound International Mailings of Lithium Batteries and Other Dangerous Goods, was published on Tuesday, May 15 and now incorporates the standards to prohibit the mailing of lithium batteries to all international destinations. Both final rules will be posted soon on the Postal Explorer® website under Federal Register Notices.


These final rules incorporate standards that now prohibit the outbound international mailing of lithium batteries and devices containing lithium batteries. This prohibition also extends to the mailing of lithium batteries to and from APO, FPO, and DPO locations. Lithium batteries are classified as dangerous goods by the United Nations and are banned from international air space. 


Lithium batteries remain mailable within the United States or its territories by domestic air and surface transportation (subject to certain weight limitations), with the exception of individual small non-rechargeable consumer type batteries mailed without the equipment they operate, which may not be transported by air.