Publications Library

ATF occasionally issues publications to inform the industries it regulates and the general public about the laws and regulations administered and enforced by ATF. These include guidebooks, newsletters, brochures, studies, and reports. ATF publications do not have the force and effect of federal statutes or Department of Justice regulations, and are not final agency actions. They may also be rescinded or modified at ATF’s discretion.

For more information, see “Memorandum for All Components: Prohibition of Improper Guidance Documents,” from Attorney General Jefferson B. Sessions III, November 16, 2017.

Title Description Category Document Type
Notice 956 (55 KB) Identification Markings Place on Imported Explosive Materials and Miscellaneous Amendments - Comments are due on or before January 14, 2003. To submit a comment electronically, use To submit comments by mail or fax, please see the instructions included within the notice. To view all comments and documents associated with this notice, go to and enter Notice 956. Explosives Report
Notice 933 (46 KB)

Implementation of Public Law 104-208, the Omnibus Consolidated Appropriations Act of 1997, Relating to a National Repository for Arson and Explosives Information (Pub. 11/15/01) - Comments are due on or before February 13, 2002. To submit a comment electronically, use To submit comments by mail or fax, please see the instructions included within the notice. To view all comments and documents associated with this notice, go to and enter Notice 933.

Explosives Report
ATF 15F (153 KB) Storage of Shock Tube with Detonators - The Department of Justice is amending the regulations of the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms, and Explosives (ATF) by allowing shock tube to be stored with detonators because these materials when stored together do not pose a mass detonation hazard. Shock tube is a small diameter plastic laminate tube coated with a very thin layer of explosive material. When initiated, it transmits a low energy wave from one point to another. The outer surface of the tube remains intact during and after functioning.
Explosives Report
All FELs-Feb2009-Open Letter-Explosives Storage Security Reminder (58 KB)

ATF would like to remind all Federal explosives licensees and permittees of the importance of security at their explosives storage sites, and we advise all industry members to take heightened security precautions in light of thefts along the Mexican border.

Explosives Report
TD-400: This final rule amends regulations to clarify the meanings of terms, increase license and permit fees, eliminate duplication in licensing, relax the licensing requirements for on-site manufacturers, implement a storage notification requirement (104 KB)

This final rule amends regulations to clarify the meanings of terms, increase license and permit fees, eliminate duplication in licensing, relax the licensing requirements for on-site manufacturers, implement a storage notification requirement for manufacturers and other storers of explosives, update the theft/loss hotline number for reporting thefts or losses of explosives, and make minor modifications to regulations on storage.

Explosives Report
Explosives Industry Newsletter - August 2015 (406 KB)
What’s in this Issue:  New Acting Director; New Assistant Director, Enforcement; Programs and Services; New Chief of EIPB; Magazine Identification Program; Less Lethal Devices; Fireworks Reminders; NPRM to Remove Reference Note; Marking and Recording Bulk Explosives; Internal Transfers of Explosives; Plywood, Hardwood and ATF Ruling 76-18; Using Commercial Records Explosives Thefts—2013 thru 2014
Explosives Newsletter
Suspicious Packages (ATF P 5400.26) (285 KB)

This publication provides vital safety information to persons and organizations encountering suspicious packages and/or bomb threats.

Explosives Guide
2014 USBDC Explosive Incident Report (1969 KB)

The Annual Explosives Incident Report (EIR) reviews bombing and explosives related incidents and threats from data reported to the United States Bomb Data Center (USBDC) through the Bomb Arson Tracking System (BATS).

Explosives Report
Explosives Industry Newsletter - June 2016 (420 KB)
What’s in this Issue: New Division Chief; Bomb Threat and Suspicious Package Publication; Transfer of Unmarked Explosive Materials; Nitrocellulose; Storage in Trailers; Type 2 Magazine Floors and Roofs; Highways; Marijuana Use and Prohibited Persons; Background Investigation and Denial; Lost, Stolen or Destroyed IPECs; Lists of Authorized Persons; Remote Storage Locations and RPs; Seismic and Geophysical Operations¼Continued; 2015 Annual List of Explosives
Explosives Newsletter
Explosive Industry Newsletter-June 2016 Addendum (73 KB)
ATF’s June 2016 Explosives Industry Newsletter included a brief discussion of Nitrocellulose, and attempted to clarify the circumstances under which wetted Nitrocellulose is considered a high explosive under 27 CFR, Part 555.  As with all explosives, ATF’s focus is on the potential public safety risks associated with materials that can be misused or diverted to unlawful purposes.  Subsequent contact from industry members who import, transport, store or employ wetted Nitrocellulose in the production of ammunition, however, has brought to our attention issues that were not fully addressed in the Newsletter and require further consultation and consideration with the industry.  Accordingly, ATF has and will conduct further industry outreach concerning wetted Nitrocellulose.  In the interim, previously authorized industry practices concerning wetted Nitrocellulose will not be affected.
Explosives Newsletter
Department of Defense Contractor Inspections: ATF Inspection Process (Explosives) (64 KB)
This document provides information on ATF’s compliance inspection process and is intended to help Federal firearms or explosives licensees who are DOD contractors prepare for and participate in an ATF compliance inspection.
Explosives Guide
2018 Explosives Incident Report (EIR) (1759 KB)

2018 Explosives Incident Report (EIR)

Explosives Report
Recordkeeping Requirements for Explosive Permittees and Limited Permittees (ATF P 5400.20) (6573 KB)

This publication defines what each Federal explosives permittee and limited permitee must do for compliance, as per the Federal explosives regulations, at 27 CFT, Part 555.

Explosives Report
Publication of Federal Explosives Laws and Regulations (ATF P 5400.7) (4325 KB)

Also known as the "Orange Book," this documentation provides federal explosives law and regulations and reflects changes and developments in response to the Safe Explosives Act of 2002.

Explosives Report
Explosives Industry Newsletter - September 2008 (1525 KB)
What’s In This Issue: Carson W. Carroll Named Assistant Director (Enforcement Programs and Services); Changes in the Arson and Explosives Programs Division; Two New Field Divisions; New “Orange Book”; New Headquarters Building; Storage Rulings; Fireworks Recordkeeping and Marks of Identification; Information Resources; Variance Request Guidelines; Determination Request Guidelines; Who Should Complete a Theft or Loss Report?; Exemption Request Guidelines; 2007 Explosives Thefts
Explosives Newsletter
2016 Explosives Incident Report (1975 KB)
2016 Explosives Incident Report (EIR)
Explosives Report
Explosives Industry Newsletter - July 2017 (238 KB)
What's in this issue: Updated Safety and Security Publication; Structures Used for Indoor Storage; Firework Processes and Manufacturing; Distribution Dates; Identification of Explosive Materials; Q&As; How to read an Explosive License or Permit Number; and List of Active Explosives Rulings.


Explosives Newsletter
1974-11-Environmental Responsibilities (704 KB)

This circular advises proprietors of their responsibility to ATF with respect to the National Environmental Policy Act of 1969, the Federal Water Pollution Control Act, and the National Historic Preservation Act, and of the possible effects of these requirements upon their activities.

Explosives Industry Circular
1982-8-Discontinuance of ATF Form 5400.3, for Black Powder (660 KB)

This circular notifies explosives licensees that ATF Form 5400.3, Transaction Record for Black Powder to be used for antique weapons, is no longer required.

Explosives Industry Circular
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