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Environmental Health and Safety

Shipping Biological Materials

Training must be provided or verified prior to any personnel transporting dangerous goods. Recurrent training must take place within 24 months of previous training to ensure knowledge is current. It is recommended to designate one individual in your lab to prepare the samples for shipment.

Shipping Training

The Biosafety Office offers an online training program for shipping the following materials:

  • Category A Infectious Substances
  • Category B Infectious Substances
  • Exempt Patient Specimens
  • Genetically Modified Organisms
  • Preservatives with Infectious Substances
  • Dry Ice

The training includes General Familiarization, Overview of Dangerous Goods Shipping and Classification of Infectious Substances. Then you will be able to select any other training modules to complete based on the type of samples you are shipping. Please allow sufficient time to complete all required training modules prior to the date you plan to prepare your shipment. 

For labs that do not have prior experience shipping samples, it is often preferable to complete the training relatively close to the time you will be preparing the shipment. We recommend contacting the Biosafety Office to complete the training about two or three weeks prior to the date you anticipate shipping your samples.


Procedure for Shipping Biological Materials Training

Please complete the following steps prior to shipping any of the biological materials listed above:

  1. Create a Saf-T-Pak training account before getting started. Register here.
  2. After creating your account, you will be able to log in to your account.
  3. Contact the Biosafety Officer to request a product key code, which you'll need to add to your account. This will give you access to take the training course. Email Sherika Smith, Biosafety Officer, at for your code.
  4. Take the test and obtain a minimum score of 80% to verify your understanding of the regulations. Once the training has been completed you will receive a certificate of completion. Next, contact the Biosafety Officer at to sign the training certificate. If possible, sign your certificate and then email a scanned copy to the Biosafety Officer. She will sign it and return the copy with her signature to you.
  5. The signed certificate should be maintained in the lab as your official record of training.


If you have other questions regarding training or regulatory requirements, you can also contact Saf-T-Pak directly for assistance. Access additional information about Saf-T-Pak training.


Resources for Shipping Biological Materials

Training Requirements and Shipper’s Responsibilities [pdf]

Shipper’s Declaration for Dangerous Goods – Column Format (Fillable) [pdf]

Classification of Infectious Substances (IATA Dangerous Goods Regulations) [pdf]

Packing Instruction 650 (Applicable to UN 3373) [pdf]

Acceptance Checklist for Dry Ice (Carbon Dioxide, solid) [pdf]

Emergency Response Telephone Number (49 CFR 172.604) [pdf]

CDC Import Permit Program (IPP)

CDC Request to Import Biological Agents or Vectors of Human Disease

Department of Commerce: Bureau of Industry and Security (Export Administration)

USDA/APHIS: Animal, Animal Product, and Plant Import and Export Information

Materials of Trade (MOTs) – Hazardous Materials Carried on a Motor Vehicle [pdf]

Materials of Trade Exceptions (49 CFR 173.6) [pdf]

DOT Guide: Transporting Infectious Substances Safely [pdf]

World Courier (Specialized Courier to Manage Import/Export of Research Samples)


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