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Interpretation Response #03-0130 ([New York State Department of Environmental Conservation Division of Solid and Hazardous Materials] [Mr. Paul R. Counterman, P.E.])

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

Interpretation Response Details

Response Publish Date:

Company Name: New York State Department of Environmental Conservation Division of Solid and Hazardous Materials

Individual Name: Mr. Paul R. Counterman, P.E.

Location State: NY Country: US

View the Interpretation Document

Response text:

Jul 7, 2003


Mr. Paul R. Counterman, P.E.               Reference No. 03-0130
Director, Bureau of Hazardous Waste Management
New York State Department of Environmental Conservation
Division of Solid and Hazardous Materials
625 Broadway
Albany, NY 12233-7251

Dear Mr. Counterman:

This is in response to your May 14, 2003 letter, requesting further clarification of the entries “Solids containing flammable liquid, n.o.s;” “Solids containing toxic liquid, n.o.s;” and “Solids containing corrosive liquid, n.o.s.” to describe used cleaning rags under the Hazardous Materials Regulations (HMR; 49 CFR Parts 171-180), shipped in cloth bags to commercial laundries.

The used rags are slightly dampened by the liquid soaked into them and no free liquid is visible at the time the rags are loaded or at the time the packaging is closed.  The packages contain approximately 10 ml of corrosive, flammable, or toxic liquid and the total weight of each packaging is at least 25 pounds.  You question whether the “cloth bags” meet the leakproofness test in § 178.604.

Under Special Provisions 47, 48, and 49, the term “no free liquid” describes the physical state when a liquid hazardous material is completely absorbed onto a solid material such that no free liquid is visible away from the solid material at the time the material is closed within the package.  Provided there is no free liquid visible when the packaging is closed and at the time the rags are loaded, the shipping names listed above may be used to describe the used cleaning rags.  However, if there is any free liquid in the used rags, the above listed shipping names would be inappropriate, and the used cleaning rags must be classed in accordance with the appropriate hazard class definitions.

Packages used under these special provisions must correspond to a design type that has passed a leakproofness test at the Packing Group 11 level.  Authorized packages are found in §§ 173.212 and 173.240, for non-bulk and bulk packagings, respectively.

I hope this satisfies your inquiry.



Susan Gorsky
Senior Transportation Regulations Specialist
Office of Hazardous Materials Standards


Regulation Sections

Section Subject
172.101 Purpose and use of hazardous materials table