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Fedex to Penalize e-Commerce Shippers $350 Fine for Each Hazmat Violation

Posted on June 24, 2019 by Roger Marks

Ebay has announced to its sellers that as of June 1, 2019, FedEx is charging a $350 fee for each incident of improperly shipped hazardous materials.

The US DOT Hazardous Materials Regulations, or HMR for short, apply to many everyday products—cosmetics, perfumes, cleaning products, adhesives, paints and coatings, lithium batteries, and a lot more, even when shipped in small amounts. The good news is that there are useful exceptions for small or “limited” quantities of hazardous materials that e-commerce shippers can use to streamline their practices and ensure compliance.

FedEx will be issuing the $350 fines for improper packaging, incorrect labels or markings, undeclared shipments, and abandoned or rejected packages. Ebay is not alone: Amazon introduced new fees for noncompliant hazmat shipments earlier this year.

Shipping Lithium Batteries in e-Commerce

For e-commerce shippers who sell and ship lithium battery powered devices—smart phones, tablets, laptops, cameras, gaming devices, power tools, and more—proper packaging and labeling is crucial.

If batteries short circuit or become damaged in transit, thy can enter “thermal runaway”—a process by which the battery heats up uncontrollably and ultimately ignites or explodes. The hazards posed by lithium batteries are especially pronounced in air transit.

Read more: What makes lithium batteries so dangerous?

Learn what you need to know to ship lithium batteries and avoid penalties with these two easy-to-use online courses:

Shipping Lithium Batteries (for larger size batteries and most air shipments)
Shipping Excepted Lithium Batteries (for small batteries and button cells)  

Need to get to know the hazmat regulations fast?

If you ship flammable liquids or other hazardous materials in small quantities, the Shipping Limited Quantities and Consumer Commodities Online Course guides you step by step through what you need to know to:
  • Identify regulated hazardous materials
  • Select the right type of packaging
  • Properly pack, mark, and label your package
The course also covers general hazardous materials knowledge you need to keep your packages moving safely, on time, and in compliance.

Shipping hazardous materials? You’re in good company

As a hazmat shipper, you’re in good company. Many of the biggest companies in world ship hazardous materials every day, and thousands of brilliant men and women make hazmat transportation safety their life’s work.

Learning the right way to prepare your shipments takes a little time and effort, but will save you in the long run on penalties, carrier rejection, re-packaging, and lost product. By shipping your products correctly, you will ensure your customers get what they ordered—safely and on time.

Have questions about shipping hazardous materials with FedEx or other carriers? Reach out to us at and we can help you select the training course that’s fits what you ship and how you ship it.