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With the proliferation of lithium ion-batteries for small-scale energy storage projects, non-commercial transportation of significantly large batteries (in the few kWh range, much larger than the few hundred Wh limits currently set for non-regulated batteries) will become much more common. What regulations pertain to this type of non-commercial transport in the U.S.? How does this change once the batteries are installed in a trailer, RV, boat, or other transportable vehicle?

My specific situation is that a repair shop is requiring HAZMAT certification for whoever picks up a replaced Tesla battery pack that I wish to (personally) transport elsewhere. Is this a governmental regulation in general if, say, I was to (personally) transport the pack or its components in the future?

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Transporting Lithium Batteries

Lithium batteries are regulated as a hazardous material under the U.S. Department of Transportation's (DOT's) Hazardous Materials Regulations (HMR; 49 C.F.R., Parts 171-180). The HMR apply to any material DOT determines is capable of posing an unreasonable risk to health, safety, and property when transported in commerce. Lithium batteries must conform to all applicable HMR requirements when offered for transportation or transported by air, highway, rail, or water.

Is this a governmental regulation in general if, say, I was to (personally) transport the pack or its components in the future?

The HMR is a weighty tome so there may be more information to add to properly answer the question, but in the meantime this appears relevant:

(d) Functions not subject to the requirements of the HMR. The following are examples of activities to which the HMR do not apply:

(6) Transportation of a hazardous material by an individual for non-commercial purposes in a private motor vehicle, including a leased or rented motor vehicle.

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