Managing Hazardous Waste

We strengthen regulations and streamline waste management


“Transporter” means a person engaged in the offsite transportation (or movement) of hazardous waste by air, rail, highway or water. Chapter 13 (Standards Applicable to Transporters of Hazardous Waste) of the hazardous waste regulations applies to carriers transporting hazardous waste when that waste is subject to the manifesting requirements of Chapter 12. In general, transporters of hazardous waste must comply with these requirements and statutory requirements in Health and Safety Code, Division 20, Chapter 6.5, Article 6 & 6.5, as well as the specific DOT requirements referenced throughout the transporter regulations.

Transporters are required to comply with the regulations in Chapter 12 (Standards Applicable to Generators of Hazardous Waste) if they import hazardous waste into the United States. They must also follow certain Chapter 13 (Standards Applicable to Transporters of Hazardous Waste) requirements if they mix hazardous wastes of different DOT shipping descriptions in a single container (66263.10(c)). In such instances, the transporter does not actually become the generator, but generator responsibilities must be assumed.

Hazardous Waste Transporter Registration

Transporters do not need a permit to transport hazardous waste if they comply with Chapter 13, including obtaining a hazardous waste registration certificate. However, if the transporter stores hazardous waste longer than 10 days or treats or disposes of wastes at their facility, a permit would be required.

To ensure you submit the necessary information please review DTSC’s Hazardous Waste Transporter Registration Checklist.

Click here for the hazardous waste registration application (DTSC form 187) 

Are Transporters Required to Have Liability Insurance?

Yes. Every transporter of hazardous waste shall maintain ability to respond to damages resulting from the operation of that business. The ability to respond to damages includes the ability to respond to public liability. “Public liability” means liability for “bodily injury,” “property damage,” and “environmental restoration.”

Proof of liability insurance may be in the form of a Certificate of Insurance (DTSC 8038 or MCS-90), a bond of a California licensed surety company (MCS-82), or evidence of qualification as a self insurer (public agencies). MCS-90 or Form MCS-82 are federal forms and defined in 49 Code of Federal Regulations (CFR) sections 387.7 to 387.15 for hazardous materials and hazardous substances, which includes hazardous waste.

Click here to access the Certificate of Insurance (DTSC Form 8038). If you are using this as your proof of insurance, include it with your registration packet.

EPA Identification (ID) Number

A transporter is required to obtain an EPA ID number before transporting hazardous waste (22 California Code of Regulations [CCR], 66263.11). Transporters obtain EPA ID numbers by completing and submitting the Notification of Regulated Waste Activity Form (EPA Form 8700-12) or DTSC Form 1358. Transporter ID numbers are issued for primary offices or places of business, not individual transporting terminals. For example, separate truck terminals owned by the same company operate under the same EPA ID number; in contrast to generator ID numbers, which are generally site specific.

Click here for more information on EPA ID Numbers.

GUIDE SHEET: Obtaining Identification Numbers for Hazardous Waste Transporters

Compliance With The Manifest

Chapter 13, Article 2, dictates transporter responsibilities for the manifest system as well as record keeping requirements with which a hazardous waste transporter must comply. Before hazardous waste can be transported, the transporter must sign and date the manifest. This enables the transporter to formally acknowledge the acceptance of hazardous waste from the generator and return a signed copy to the generator before leaving the generator’s property (22 CCR 66263.20(b)).

The transporter must then deliver the hazardous waste shipment to the next transporter, the designated facility, or the alternate facility listed on the manifest or the place outside the United States designated by the generator (66263.21(a)). If the waste cannot be delivered to the designated receiver, the generator must be contacted for further instructions, and the manifest must be revised accordingly (66263.21(b)). The manifesting responsibilities vary depending on the mode of transportation (i.e., highway, water, rail, or air).

Consolidated Transporters

“Consolidated transporter” means a hazardous waste transporter registered pursuant to Health and Safety Code (HSC), Section 25165, and the regulations adopted by the department who has notified the department pursuant to HSC, Section 25165, of its intent to use the consolidated manifesting procedures set forth in HSC, Section 25160.2. (HSC, Section 25110.10.1)

Consolidated manifesting, formerly known as modified manifesting or milk-running, allows “consolidated transporters” to combine specified wastes from multiple eligible generators on a single manifest, rather than using a separate manifest from each generator. To use the procedures, the transporter must notify DTSC and limit consolidation to the hazardous wastes specified in HSC Section 25160.2(c). The generators using the consolidated manifesting procedure are exempt from filling out a hazardous waste manifest. The consolidated transporter completes both the generator and the transporter section of the manifest. Consolidated manifesting does not authorize a hazardous waste transporter to commingle different types of hazardous wastes into the same tank or container.

Transportation Regulatory Exemption

A hazardous waste transportation variance is a waiver from specific regulatory or statutory requirements. In California, there are two major categories of transportation variances that the Department of Toxic Substances Control (DTSC) may grant to hazardous waste transporters if specific requirements are met. The two categories of transportation variances are Regulatory Exemptions for Certain Transportation Operations (referred to as “TRE”), and Statutory Transportation Variances.

TRE variances are issued on a non-discretionary basis. All applicants must meet preset regulatory standards. In applying those standards, DTSC verifies only specific facts regarding eligibility and may not add case-specific conditions. TRE variances are considered ministerial (non-discretionary) and qualify for a California Environmental Quality Act (CEQA) exemption under Section 21080(b)(1) of the Public Resources Code.

Statutory Transportation Variances may be pursued on a cost reimbursement basis for additional hazardous waste transportation operations not specified or allowed in regulation. Statutory Transportation Variances are discretionary and must comply with the requirements of CEQA. An applicant must meet statutory requirements, and DTSC may impose case-specific conditions.