Carramore International Limited
Carramore International Limited

Infectious Substances

Infectious Substances


The rules covering the shipment of Infectious Substances by Air are set out in the IATA Dangerous Goods Regulations, published annually, and currently in the 62nd edition (2021).

IATA Regulations forbid infectious substances being taken aboard aircraft as hand luggage, checked-in baggage or upon the person.

In these regulations Infectious Substances are defined under Division 6.2 as;

  • substances which are known or are reasonably expected to contain pathogens. Pathogens are defined as micro-organisms (including bacteria, viruses, rickettsiae, parasites, fungi) and other agents such as prions, which can cause disease in humans or animals

Such substances are classified thus;

  • Category A: An infectious substance which is transported in a form that, when exposure to it occurs, is capable of causing permanent disability, life-threatening or fatal disease in otherwise healthy humans or animals

  • Category B: An infectious substance which does not meet the criteria for inclusion in Category A

Category A substances must be assigned to UN2814 Infectious substance, affecting humans. See IATA list [UN2814 list]
Category A substances must be assigned to UN2900 Infectious substance, affecting animals. See IATA list [UN2900 list]

Category B substances must be assigned to UN3373 Biological substance, Category B.

It is the responsibility of the person or institute offering such substances for shipment to ensure that the correct classification is chosen.

There are different requirements in the regulations depending upon whether the substances are classified as Category A or Category B substances. Such differences cover the packing, marking, labelling and documentation required to ensure compliance.

For Category A substances the maximum allowed per package is 50ml for passenger aircraft and 4L for cargo aircraft only shipments.

For Category B substances the maximum allowed for primary receptacles is 1L with a maximum of 4L in the completed package. This applies to all aircraft types.