Pricing & Classification DMM Advisory

Message board to keep postal customers informed of changes to mailing standards, services, and prices.

March 20, 2018

Hazardous Materials in the Domestic Mail

The Postal Service would like to take the opportunity to remind the mailing community of the products that are available for hazardous materials restricted to surface mail only. Examples include many common household items such as hairspray, perfumes and colognes, paint, and adhesives. In addition, non-rechargeable lithium batteries (UN3090) and rechargeable lithium batteries (UN3480) (including power packs) that are not installed in or packaged with their equipment are also restricted to surface mail only.

Surface-only transportation options include USPS Retail Ground™, Parcel Select®, and Parcel Select Lightweight®.

Publication 52, Hazardous, Restricted and Perishable Mail, section 327.1 indicates that mailable hazardous materials that are prohibited from air transportation may not be sent Priority Mail Express®, Priority Mail®, First-Class Mail®, or First-Class Package Service®. Therefore, regardless of zone, these services are prohibited when a material is restricted to surface-only transportation.

Publication 52 is available on the Postal Explorer website at Chapter 3 and the Packaging Instructions in Appendix C, provide full details of the conditions under which mailable hazardous materials may be sent in domestic mail via surface or air transportation.