The Australian Code for the Transport of Dangerous Goods by Road and Rail is set to be updated.

Authorities are working on changes designed to reduce the burden on industry when transporting low-risk items, and bring them into line with new United Nations transport requirements.

National Transport Commission Chief Executive Paul Retter said one of the key changes included simplifying transport of lower-risk limited quantities of dangerous goods.

“Operators who transport low-risk dangerous goods in limited quantities such as household cleaning products, perfumes and cosmetics will no longer be compelled to abide by overly burdensome labelling and marking requirements, for example,” Mr Retter said. 

Every two years, the United Nations updates the Transport of Dangerous Goods Model Regulations. The United Nations recently approved the 20th round of changes to the United National model regulations. These model regulations are subsequently adopted by participating countries.

“The changes approved by ministers on 18 May 2018 will ensure the Code aligns more closely with United Nations Regulations,” Mr Retter said.

Other changes include exempting mobile processing units (MPUs) from the Code to remove duplicate requirements in other laws, as long as the MPU is authorised within each jurisdiction to operate. MPUs are vehicles designed to take raw explosive materials to mine sites where the explosive will be manufactured and used.

States and territories have committed to amending their local laws to align with making the changes from version 7.6 of the Code for the Transport of Dangerous Goods by Road and Rail to their local laws.

The new version of the code should be available to the public in coming weeks.