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Interpretation Response #08-0219 ([HMT Associates, L.L.C.] [Mr. Edward Altemos])

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

Interpretation Response Details

Response Publish Date:

Company Name: HMT Associates, L.L.C.

Individual Name: Mr. Edward Altemos

Location State: VA Country: US

View the Interpretation Document

Response text:

October 7, 2008






Mr. Edward Altemos

HMT Associates, L.L.C.

803 King Street

Suite 300

Alexandria, VA 22314-3105

Ref. No.08-0219

Dear Mr. Altemos:

This is in response to your August 28, 2008 email requesting clarification of the Hazardous Materials Regulations (HMR; 49 CFR Parts 171-180) applicable to shipping paper requirements. You present a number of scenarios with your interpretation of the applicable requirements. You ask that we comment on the accuracy of your interpretation. Your specific scenarios and interpretations, and our responses are as follows:

Scenario 1: The shipping paper states "Fire Extinguisher (Fire Extinguisher), 2.2, UN1044, 1 cylinder X 3 kg." The package marking states "Fire Extinguisher UN1044."

Altemos" Interpretation: This shipping paper description is not in compliance with the HMR because the words "Fire Extinguisher" have been interspersed between the required elements of the basic description, and because this term is not a "technical [or] chemical group" name specifically allowed to be interspersed within the required shipping description.

PHMSA"s Comment: Your interpretation is correct. As required in § 172.202(d), technical and chemical group names may be entered in parentheses between the proper shipping name and hazard class or following the basic description. An appropriate modifier, such as "contains" or "containing," and/or the percentage of the technical constituent may also be used.

Scenario 2: The shipping paper states "Paint (Paint related material), 3, UN1263, II, Fiberboard box X 2L." The package marking states "Paint related material UN1263."

Altemos" Interpretation: The shipping paper description is not in compliance with the HMR because the words "Paint Related Material" have been interspersed between the required elements of the basic description, and because this term is not a "technical [or] chemical group" name specifically allowed to be interspersed within the required shipping. Moreover, "Paint" and "Paint related material" are different materials, so although separated by an "or" in the relevant entry in the Hazardous Materials Table (HMT), both names cannot be "appropriate" to the material being described. Finally, the proper shipping name "Paint" conflicts with the proper shipping name on the package.

PHMSA"s Comment: Your interpretation is correct. As specified in § 172.101(c), the word "or" in italics indicates that terms in the sequence may be used as the proper shipping name, as appropriate. In addition, see PHMSA"s comment to Scenario 1.

Scenario 3: The shipping paper states "Paint, 3, UN1263, III, 1 Fiberboard box X 2L." The package marking states "Paint related material UN1263."

Altemos" Interpretation: The shipping paper description is not in compliance with the HMR because "Paint" and "Paint Related Material" are different materials, the proper shipping name "Paint" conflicts with the proper shipping name on the package. Alternatively, since "Paint" and "Paint related materials" are different materials, if the shipping paper is correct, the package marking is incorrect.

PHMSA"s Comment: Your interpretation is correct. In addition, see PHMSA"s comment to Scenario 1 and 2.

Scenario 4: The shipping paper states "Air bag inflators or Air bag Modules, 9, UN3268, III, 1 Fiberboard box X 4 kg." The package marking states "Air bag inflators UN 3268."

Altemos" Interpretation: The shipping paper description is not in compliance with the HMR because the words "Air bag modules" has been interspersed between the required elements of the basic description, and because this tern is not a "technical [or] chemical group" name specifically allowed to be interspersed within the required shipping description "without limitations" under the provisions of § 172.202(d). In this regard, "Air bag inflators" and "Air bag modules" are different materials, so although separated by an "or" in the relevant entry in the HMT, both names cannot be "appropriate" to the material being described. Finally, the interspersed term "Air bag modules" conflicts with the proper shipping name on the package.

PHMSA"s Comment: Your interpretation is correct. In addition, see PHMSA"s comment to Scenario 1 and 2.

Scenario 5: The shipping paper states "Ethanol, 3, UN1170, II, Fiberboard box X 3 L. The package marking states "Ethanol or Ethyl Alcohol UN1170."

Altemos" Interpretation: The shipping paper description is in compliance with the HMR. It does not conflict with the package marking, nor does the packing marking contravene the provisions of the HMR since no specific sequence is specified for package marking, and because "Ethanol" and "Ethyl Alcohol" are synonyms for the same material and both are authorized proper shipping names for that material (UN1170) under the HMR.

PHMSA"s Comment: As provided in § 172.101(c), when one entry in Column (2) of the HMT references another entry by use of the word "see," if both names are in Roman type, either name may be used as the proper shipping name (e.g., Ethyl alcohol, see Ethanol). However, this provision does not specify that both entries must be simultaneously used in the basic description either on the shipping paper or when marking a non-bulk packaging.

Scenario 6: The shipping paper states "Ethanol (Ethyl Alcohol), 3, UN1170, II, 1 Fiberboard X 1 L." The package marking states "Ethanol UN1470.:



Altemos" Interpretation: The shipping paper description conforms to the HMR since "Ethanol" and "Ethyl Alcohol" are synonyms for the same material and both are authorized proper shipping names for that material under the HMR. Moreover, "Ethyl Alcohol" is a "technical" name specifically allowed to be interspersed within the required basic descriptions.

PHMSA"s Comment: Your interpretation is correct. See PHMSA"s comment to Scenario 1.

Scenario 7: The quantity and unit of measure on the shipping paper states "Acetone, 3, UN1090, II, 1 Fiberboard box X 4 1 L" for which the "4 1 L" is intended to indicate that the fiberboard box contains 4 inner packagings each of one liter capacity.

Altemos" Interpretation: The manner of indicating the total quantity covered by the description (the shipment concerned is not an air shipment) does not conform to the requirements of § 172.202(a)(5) because the numerical value indicating the quantity covered by the description (i.e., the figure "4" as in 4 liters) is not immediately followed by an indication of the applicable unit of measurement (i.e., "Liters" or "L"). Because the HMR do not require an indication of the number of inner packagings in a combination packaging, as written, the total quantity covered by the description could be incorrectly interpreted to be "41 L."

PHMSA"s Comment: Your interpretation is correct. As specified in §172.202(a), except for transportation by aircraft, the total quantity of hazardous materials covered by the description must be indicated (by mass or volume, or by activity for Class 7 materials) and must include an indication of the applicable unit of measurement. For example, "200 kg" or "50 L."

I hope this information is helpful.

Sincerely,

Susan Gorsky,

Acting Chief, Standards Development

Office of Hazardous Materials Standards

172.101, 172.202

Regulation Sections

Section Subject
172.101 Purpose and use of hazardous materials table
172.202 Description of hazardous material on shipping papers