Instructions for shipping

When sending hazardous materials and dangerous goods

Hazardous materials and dangerous goods require specific packaging, labeling, and documentation for transport. Federal and international authorities closely monitor shipments of hazardous materials or dangerous goods—including diagnostic specimens and infectious substances.

Anyone shipping hazardous material must have documented training. Such shipments include diagnostic specimens from humans or animals, or cultures of substances infectious to humans and/or animals. Materials must be properly classified. Regulatory provisions for shipment must be met prior to shipment, including export control review requirements for international packages.

If you need to ship hazardous materials or dangerous goods, contact the Office of Research Assurances.

Forms required for shipping & returns


Every package that goes out of WSU Pullman requires a Request for Shipment of Merchandise form.


Use the Shipping Request Form. Take all laboratory research packages to the research laboratory manager for inspection and approval by prior to shipping.


Use the Request for Shipment form provided by the Copy/Mail Center.


Obtain shipping forms from the mailroom.


No forms required.


Obtain shipping forms from the mailroom.

Returning hazardous materials shipments

If you need to return a hazardous material/dangerous good shipment, contact the Office of Research Assurances for guidance on repackaging the contents for transport.

Returning WSU-issued laptops containing lithium-ion batteries

  1. If you are returning WSU-issued laptops containing lithium-ion batteries, the package must be transported by ground transportation domestically. For international shipments, please contact Hazardous Materials Shipping.
  2. It’s recommended to have a carrier (e.g., UPS/FedEx) package and process the shipment.
  3. Should a carrier processing facility not be available in your area, follow the guidance for UPS/FedEx.


Consequences of non-compliance

Failure to comply with regulations for shipping hazardous materials and dangerous goods may result in any of the following:

  • Increased risk of material release during the shipping process
  • Refusal or return of packages (particularly problematic with temperature-sensitive materials)
  • Fines from the U.S. Department of Homeland Security
  • Up to 10 years of imprisonment and $1 million in fines for export control violations

Shipment delays & losses

Shipments do not always arrive as scheduled. They may get held up in customs. Shipments with dry ice may be bumped from an aircraft if there are too many other packages with dry ice in the cargo. Bad weather can delay flights. Accidents happen.

Take precautions

If your shipment has particular importance or value, consider insurance. If using dry ice, pack with extra dry ice to allow for unexpected delays in transport.


You can insure your intellectual property. However, if ill fate were to befall your package, you would have to prove that your intellectual property was worth the amount for which it was insured.

FedEx does not offer shipping Insurance. The declared value of your package represents the maximum liability of FedEx in connection with the shipment.  For details, see FedEx Express Terms and Conditions, Declared Value and Limits of Liability.

If the material you are shipping has high value, contact the hazardous materials shipping coordinator to discuss insurance options.

Shipping questions?

General questions

Hazardous materials shipping coordinator

Regulations and references