USA Banner

Official US Government Icon

Official websites use .gov
A .gov website belongs to an official government organization in the United States.

Secure Site Icon

Secure .gov websites use HTTPS
A lock ( ) or https:// means you’ve safely connected to the .gov website. Share sensitive information only on official, secure websites.

U.S. Department of Transportation U.S. Department of Transportation Icon United States Department of Transportation United States Department of Transportation

Interpretation Response #02-0212 ([Wal Mart Stores] [Sue Eaton])

Below is the interpretation response detail and a list of regulations sections applicable to this response.

Interpretation Response Details

Response Publish Date:

Company Name: Wal Mart Stores

Individual Name: Sue Eaton

Location State: AR Country: US

View the Interpretation Document

Response text:

JUN 9, 2003

Ms. Sue Eaton                                         Ref. No.: 02-0212
Wal Mart Stores
Return Center 8098
1901 S.E. Tenth Street
Bentonville, Arkansas 72716

Dear Ms. Eaton:

This responds to your letter regarding shipping a material described as "Waste Consumer Commodity, ORM-D" as prescribed in § 173.156 of the Hazardous Materials Regulations (HMR; 49 CFR Parts 171-180). We apologize for the delay in responding and hope it has not caused any inconvenience. You provided photocopies of the boxes and pallet.
Your company's waste products include aerosols, and bags of fertilizer that have been damaged or are no longer saleable, shipped from distribution centers to a waste site in an exclusive use vehicle. The aerosols are packaged in a UN 4G fiberboard box with a plastic liner. The boxes are closed and stacked on a 4-way pallet. The bags of fertilizer are repaired and shrink-wrapped. The entire skid or pallet (containing boxes and bags) is then shrink-wrapped and marked. You asked if the above described configuration is considered to be "unitized", and thus limited to a maximum weight of 550 pounds on one pallet.

Exceptions for shipment of a material described as "Waste Consumer Commodity, ORM-D" are provided in § 173.156. Strong outer packagings, marking requirements specified in part 172 of the HMR, and the 30 kg (66 pounds) gross weight limitations are not required for materials classed as ORM-D when: (1) unitized in cages, carts, boxes or similar overpacks (e.g., boxes shrink-wrapped on a pallet); (2) transported by rail, private or contract motor carrier, or common carrier in a vehicle under exclusive use for such service; and (3) transported to or from a manufacturer, a distribution center, or a retail outlet, or transported to a disposal facility from one offeror.

When offered or transported by highway or rail between a manufacturer, a distribution center, and a retail outlet, the 30 kg (66 pounds) gross weight limitation does not apply provided: (1) inner packagings conform to the quantity limits for inner packages in §§ 173.150(b),173.152(b),
173.154(b), 173.155(b) and 173.306(a) arid (b); (2) the inner packages are packed into corrugated fiberboard trays to prevent movement; (3) the trays are placed in a fiberboard box which is banded and
secured to a wooden pallet by metal, fabric, or plastic straps to form a single pal1etized unit; (4) the package conforms to the general requirements for packagings in § § 173.24 and 173.24a; and (5) the package is marked in accordance with § 172.316. The maximum net quantity of hazardous material permitted on one palletized unit is 250 kg (550 pounds).(See § 173.156(b)(l) and (2)).

Packages, such as your company's "damaged or repaired bags of fertilizer," which are damaged, defective, or found leaking hazardous materials may not be transported unless placed in a metal or plastic removable head salvage drum that is compatible with the lading and shipped for repackaging or disposal. The drum must be a UN 1A2, 1B2, 1N2 or 1H2 tested and marked for Packing Group III or higher performance standards for liquids or solids and a leakproofhess test of20 kPa (3 psig). Alternatively, a drum manufactured prior to October 1, 1993 as a salvage drum may be used in accordance with the provisions of § 173.3(c) in effect on September 30,1991. Capacity of the drum may not exceed 450 L (119 gallons). Each package must be marked with the proper shipping name of the material and the name and address of the consignee. In addition, the packaging must be marked 'SALVAGE" or "SALVAGE DRUM". For your information, the "bags" of fertilizer probably do not qualify as a Consumer commodity, ORM-D (i.e., inner packaging and outer packaging requirements).

I hope this satisfies your inquiry. If we can be of further assistance, please contact us.


Delmer F. Billings
Chief, Standards Development
Office of Hazardous Materials Standards

Regulation Sections

Section Subject
173.156 Exceptions for limited quantity and ORM