PHMSA Response Letter
March 30, 2012
Mr. Henry Wake Huffman
396 State Highway 1959
Grayson, Kentucky 41143
Ref. No.: 12-0002
Dear Mr. Huffman:
This responds to your letter dated December 21, 2011, regarding whether under the Hazardous Materials Regulations (HMR; 49 CFR Parts 171-180) a driver of a motor vehicle must have specialized training to transport medical oxygen. Your questions are paraphrased and answered as follows:
Q1. Does a driver of a motor vehicle transporting medical oxygen cylinders need specialized training on the safe handling and transport of this material?
A1. Additional specialized training may be required depending on the job function and handling requirements for specific hazardous materials. Responsibility for ensuring that the level of training is adequate and appropriate is the obligation of the hazmat employer.
Q2. Would the driver also need a Commercial Driver¿s License (CDL) if hauling such products as old tires, paint, gas, oil, and other materials left behind from abandoned property.
A2. In accordance with 49 CFR 383.5 of the Department¿s Federal Motor Carrier Safety Regulations (FMCSR), a driver of a commercial motor vehicle (CMV) that has a GVWR of 11,794 kilograms (26,001 pounds) or transports a hazardous material that requires placarding must obtain a CDL with a hazmat endorsement (See subpart G of part 383 of the FMCSR).
Q3. Is specialized training needed even if the total amount of hazardous materials being transported is less than 1,001 pounds?
A3. Yes, training is required. There are, however, exceptions in the HMR for training and other requirements. For example, if you meet the materials of trade exceptions in §173.6, you are excepted from the HMR, including training.
Q4. What are the penalties for violation of the requirements of the HMR, such as training?
A4. A hazmat employer must ensure that each of its hazmat employees is trained in accordance with the requirements prescribed under subpart H of Part 172 (see §172.702). A person who knowingly violates a requirement of the Federal Hazmat Transportation Law, 49 U.S.C. § 5123, applicable to the transportation of hazardous materials or causing them to be transported or shipped is liable for a civil penalty of not more than $55,000 and not less than $250 for each violation, except the maximum civil penalty is $110,000 (see §107.329).
For a list of frequently cited violations see Appendix A to Subpart D of Part 107.
I hope this satisfies your inquiry.
Acting Chief, Standards Development
Standards and Rulemaking Division