DOT Compressed Gas Cylinder Regulations

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Compressed gas cylinders are hazardous items because if the cylinder or its valve sustains damage, the cylinder may explode or become a projectile. In addition, the gases themselves may be either highly flammable, toxic, an oxidizer, or a combination of two or more hazards. Therefore, the federal Department of Transportation regulates the manner in which compressed gas cylinders may be transported upon public roads, for the protection of the driver as well as the public at large.

Type Of Vehicle

A vehicle which is used to transport compressed gas cylinders should have a storage area which is open to the atmosphere and has a flat floor or platform for the cylinders to set on. Optionally, the vehicle may have a rack or racks which secure the cylinders against movement, in lieu of a flat floor or platform.

Cylinder Restraint

The cylinders must be restrained from movement whether placed upon a floor or in racks or boxes. Cylinders may be transported in an upright or horizontal position. However, any cylinder which has a safety pressure release valve must be transported in such position that the valve is not submerged in the liquid contents of the cylinder.


The vehicle must proceed directly from the point of origin to the delivery destination. Also, the vehicle is prohibited from entering any tunnel while transporting cylinders.