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

Interpretation Response #08-0223 ([High Q LLC] [Mr. Scott Bischoff])

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

Interpretation Response Details

Response Publish Date:

Company Name: High Q LLC

Individual Name: Mr. Scott Bischoff

Location State: PA Country: US

View the Interpretation Document

Response text:

February 19, 2009



Mr. Scott Bischoff

High Q LLC

314 Fort Cherry Road

McDonald, PA 15057

Ref. No. 08-0223

Dear Mr. Bischoff:

This is in response to your letter requesting clarification of the Hazardous Materials Regulations (HMR; 49 CFR Parts 171-180) regarding the testing of packagings containing hazardous materials that will be transported in accordance with the small quantity exceptions under § 173.4. Specifically, you ask whether any size container may be used for small quantities of hazardous materials provided the maximum allowable quantity (1 oz) of hazardous material is not exceeded. You also ask whether the testing of the packages must be performed with the maximum allowed quantity of material, 30g (1 oz.) for solids and 30mL (1 oz.) for liquids, or whether the packaging must be filled to 95 percent capacity for solids and 98 percent capacity for liquids.

For packagings used to transport hazardous materials in accordance with the small quantity exceptions, you are correct that any size container may be used provided the hazardous material in each inner receptacle does not exceed one oz. Cushioning and absorbent material that is capable of absorbing the entire contents of the package and that will not react chemically with the hazardous material must surround either each inner packaging or the inside of the outer packaging. The inner packagings must not be liquid full at 55 °C (131 °F) and must have removable closures held securely in place with wire, tape, or other positive means.

With respect to the drop and compression load tests, except for bags containing solids, either quantity of material may be used. Section 178.602(b) specifies that for the drop and stacking tests, inner and single-unit receptacles other than bags must be filled to not less than 95% of maximum capacity (see §171.8 of this subchapter) in the case of solids and not less than 98% of maximum in the case of liquids. Bags containing solids must be filled to the maximum mass at which they may be used. The exception in § 173.4 for small quantities requires the

completed package, as demonstrated by prototype testing, to be capable of sustaining drop and compressive load tests. The performance standard is a capability standard which must be demonstrated by prototype testing as required by § 178.4(a)(6).

I hope this information is helpful. Please contact this office if you have additional questions.


Hattie L. Mitchell

Chief, Regulatory Review and Reinvention

Office of Hazardous Materials Standards

173.4, 178.602(b)

Regulation Sections

Section Subject
171.8 Definitions and abbreviations
173.4 Small quantities for highway and rail