Hazardous Materials Routing

Colorado Permits


Information found in the fact sheet below includes:

  • Permit and application requirements
  • Insurance minimum levels*
  • Insurance self-insurer qualifications*
  • Annual nuclear permit application information permit fees

*Note: Insurance documents are not automated. Documents are uploaded to the permit system from the company dashboard in the bottom right of the page. Once they been uploaded and verified to meet minimum requirements, the insurance expiration date will be visible in your account.

Hazardous Materials Permit Facts



Apply for a Permit Online

Permits are available through the COOPR website, and may be ordered up to 60 days in advance.

Hazardous Materials Routing


Title 42, Article 20 of the Colorado Revised Statutes governs the routing of hazardous materials by motor vehicles on all public roads in Colorado. CDOT Policy Directive 1903.0 and CDOT Procedural Directive 1903.1, govern CDOT’s role in the designation of these routes.

Designating Colorado Hazardous Materials Routes

To designate a Colorado highway as a Hazardous Materials Route, the Freight Mobility & Safety Branch is responsible for coordinating the route request. Within 180 days of the receipt of all required petition documents and information, the branch will provide a response. During that time, the branch will assemble the Hazmat Route Advisory Team to perform an analysis to determine if the proposed route meets the required criteria prior to being brought before the Transportation Commission, which includes:

  • The route(s) under consideration is/are feasible, practicable, and not unreasonably expensive for such transportation.
  • The route(s) is/are continuous within a jurisdiction and from one jurisdiction to another.
  • The route(s) does/do not unreasonably burden interstate or intrastate commerce.
  • The route(s) designation is/are not arbitrary or intended by the petitioner merely to divert the transportation of hazardous materials to other communities.
  • The route(s) designation does/do not interfere with the pickup or delivery of hazardous materials.
  • The route(s) designation is/are consistent with all applicable state and federal laws and regulations.
  • The route(s) provides greater safety to the public than other feasible routes. Current quantifiable data to help determine this includes:
    • AADT, crash and fatality rates
    • Population within a one-mile swath of each side of the highway Locations of schools, hospitals, sensitive environmental areas, rivers, lakes, etc.
    • Emergency response capabilities on the route
    • Condition of the route, i.e., vertical and horizontal alignment, pavement condition, level of access to the route, etc.
Requesting Potential Colorado Hazardous Materials Routes

The requesting party submits a written request for analysis. Refer to the following checklist for required information:

  1. Signed letter from the requesting entity or entities;
  2. Primary point of contact of the request;
  3. Detailed physical description of the route including, but not limited to, beginning and ending mile markers and route between;
  4. A letter of support form the appropriate governing authority from each town, city, county or city and county the route traverses. 
  5. The identification of any local business or industry which is known to be in significantly reliant on Hazardous Materials transportation and which may be affected by the designation;
  6. A draft Colorado State Patrol Hazardous Material Route Designation Petition Packet, completed in coordination and consultation with the Freight Mobility & Safety Branch; 
  7. Additional information may be required for CDOT to best assess the request.
Evaluating New Colorado Hazardous Materials Routes

The following are the steps taken by CDOT when considering a new Colorado Hazardous Materials Route request:

  • Preliminary information, as noted above will be compiled.
  • The Hazmat Route Advisory Team will convene to review the request and all available information. 
  • If it has been determined the route meets minimal qualifications, the team may choose, but is not required, to hold meetings with elected officials, emergency response personnel or the local community.
  • The teams will either deny the request, or recommend approval to the Transportation Commission.
  • If the Transportation Commission approves the request, CDOT will submit a petition to the Colorado State Patrol to designate the route as a new Colorado Hazardous Materials Routes.

Colorado State Patrol (CSP) has sole authority to designate a Colorado Hazardous Materials Routes and will either approve or deny the petition. For more information on CSP’s procedures please visit here.

Truck on a mountain pass

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ)


Who may request a change to a route designation?

A request for analysis may be made by CDOT staff, a local government or private industry.

How long does CDOT have to analyze a request?

CDOT has 180 days from the date the request is received to complete the analysis, and either deny the request or recommend approval to the transportation commission.

What is CDOT’s role if a hazmat route change is requested on a local road?

CDOT has no official role when the route of interest is a local road.  However, the Mobility Analysis Section is willing to provide technical assistance, as appropriate, in conducting analysis.  The local entity must submit a petition to Colorado State Patrol (CSP) directly.

What criteria will CDOT use while analyzing a route for hazmat designation?

Factors used to determine hazmat routes under consideration include:

  • Feasibility and cost effectiveness 
  • Connecting to and within other routes
  • Improve safety to the public, as compared to other routes. This could include considering:
    • Annual average daily traffic, crash and fatality rates
    • Population density within a one-mile of each side of the highway
    • Location of schools, hospitals, sensitive environmental areas, rivers, lakes, etc.
    • Emergency response capabilities on the route
    • Condition of the route, i.e., vertical and horizontal alignment, pavement condition, level of access to the route, etc.
    • Does not unreasonably burden interstate or intrastate commerce
Who makes up the hazmat route advisory team?

A CDOT advisory committee guides these decisions, which includes staff from:

  • Division of Transportation Development, Mobility Analysis Section
  • Office of Traffic Engineering
  • Commercial Vehicle Permits Office
  • Office of Policy & Government Relations
  • Region traffic engineer for affected CDOT region
  • Region environmental manager for affected CDOT region
  • Division of Transportation Development's Environmental Branch
  • Section maintenance superintendent or deputy maintenance superintendent for affected CDOT region
  • Staff Bridge Division
  • Others as deemed appropriate by Mobility Analysis Section
Will CDOT hold public meetings while evaluating the route?

While evaluating potential changes to a hazmat route designation, CDOT’s role is to be a neutral fact-finder and analyze the practical concerns of the change such as safety and response capabilities. However, CDOT will hold meetings if there is a need to further collect information. 

CSP is required by law to hold public meetings once a petition has been submitted for final considerations. This is the best forum to gather public sentiment and concern on the proposed route designation.