U.S. Customs releases new shipping regulations
U.S. Customs releases new shipping regulations

Online Exclusive, Jul 31 2003

Starting in the fall, every rail car, cargo plane and truck will have to inform the government what they are transporting up to four hours before they touch U.S. soil.

The new regulations from the Bureau of Customs and Border Protection published last week are meant to give officials time to identify high-risk cargo before it enters the country.

Air carriers handling imports will have to transmit cargo data four hours before arrival; rail carriers, two hours; and truckers, 30 minutes to one hour, depending on whether the carrier meets certain requirements. Exporters will face similar deadlines.

Ocean carriers have been living with the rules since February, having to report cargo data 24 hours before arriving in the U.S. Results have been mixed, but many say that customs has been flexible and the delays have not been as serious as expected.

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