How to ship Biological Substances,
Category B

Biological substances need to packed in way that prevents loss of contents that may occur due to vibration, changes in temperature, humidity or pressure. Find out what packaging materials you need, how to pack the substances securely and label the box correctly.

What are Biological Substances, Category B?

They’re human or animal specimens like urine, blood or tissue, which might be infected with a disease or virus.

What type of shipment is it?

This is an ambient shipment, meaning it doesn’t require a coolant as long as the temperatures stays between 15° to 25°C (59°-77°F) or up to 30°C, depending on climatic conditions, during transportation.

Its dangerous goods classification is UN3373.

Do I need to be trained to ship it?

Yes. You need to be trained and understand the necessary regulations. Another option is to hire a person or company to prepare the shipment for you.

What type of packaging materials do I need?

Good quality packaging. This includes a primary receptacle, secondary packaging and strong outer packaging.

How do I pack it?

For liquids, the primary receptacle must be leakproof and hold no more than 1 L.

If you’re packing liquids like blood, you’ll need to use primary receptacles placed within the secondary packaging.

Place absorbent material between the primary receptacle and secondary packaging.

If you’re using multiple primary receptacles, they must be individually wrapped and separated to prevent contact.

Ensure the secondary packaging is also leakproof.

What preventative measures do I need to take?

The package must be capable of withstanding a 1.2 m drop test on any one of its sides without any leakage from the primary receptacle.

What about markings and labels?

The words “Biological Substance, Category B” should be clearly stated on the outer package with the letters at least 6 mm high.

Beside the text, there should also be a diamond shaped marking containing the text “UN3373” at a 45° angle. Each side of the marking should measure at least 50 mm.

You also need to add an emergency contact number on the outside of the package.

Shipping requirements and documentation may vary between carriers. This website is designed to provide general information related to shipping. If you’re unsure of the shipping requirements that apply to you, check with your carrier. Make sure to check the rules and regulations of the country you’re shipping from and to prior to shipping. You can find this information on government websites.

Relevant topics