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Interpretation Response #09-0194 ([Costco Wholesale] [Mr. Dale Anderson])

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

Interpretation Response Details

Response Publish Date:

Company Name: Costco Wholesale

Individual Name: Mr. Dale Anderson

Location State: WA Country: US

View the Interpretation Document

Response text:

November 25, 2009

 

 

 

Mr. Dale Anderson

Director Risk Management

Costco Wholesale

999 Lake Drive

Issaquah, WA 98027



Ref. No. 09-0194

Dear Mr. Anderson:

This responds to your August 27, 2009 letter and subsequent telephone discussion with a member of my staff requesting further clarification of the applicability of the Hazardous Materials Regulations (HMR; 49 CFR Parts 171-180) to the transport of used or spent dry cell batteries.

In your letter, you reference letters issued by this Office on June 23, 2009 (Ref. No. 09-0090) and August 13, 2009 (Ref. No. 09-0150) in which we addressed the applicability of the HMR to the transportation of various types and sizes of used or spent dry cell batteries. In letter Ref. No. 09-0090, we stated that, based on the test data provided, spent 1.5-volt alkaline dry cell batteries are not subject to regulation under the HMR when transported by highway or rail because they are not likely to generate a dangerous quantity of heat nor are they likely to short circuit or create sparks when they are transported in a packaging with no other battery types or chemistries present. Similarly, in letter Ref. No. 09-0150, we stated that, based on the test data provided, used 6-volt carbon zinc batteries and 9-volt alkaline batteries are not subject to regulation under the HMR when transported by highway or rail because they are not likely to generate a dangerous quantity of heat nor are they likely to short circuit or create sparks when transported in a packaging with no other battery chemistries present.

According to your letter, your company participates in a battery recycling program. For purposes of shipping the used batteries in support of the battery recycling program, you request confirmation that used or spent batteries utilizing dry chemistries (e.g., alkaline and carbon zinc) of sizes ranging from 1.5-volt to 9-volt that are combined in the same package without terminal protection do not pose an unreasonable risk in transportation and, thus, are not subject to the HMR.

Your understanding is correct. After further consideration and analysis of the battery chemistries and sizes in question and based on information available to us, it is the opinion of this Office that used or spent dry, sealed batteries of both non-rechargeable and rechargeable designs, described as "Batteries, dry, sealed, n.o.s." in the Hazardous Materials Table in

§ 172.101 of the HMR and not specifically covered by another proper shipping name, with a marked rating up to 9-volt are not likely to generate a dangerous quantity of heat, short circuit, or create sparks in transportation. Therefore, used or spent batteries of the type "Batteries, dry, sealed, n.o.s." with a marked rating of 9-volt or less that are combined in the same package and transported by highway or rail for recycling, reconditioning, or disposal are not subject to the HMR. Note that batteries utilizing different chemistries (i.e., those battery chemistries specifically covered by another proper shipping name) as well as dry, sealed batteries with a marked rating greater than 9-volt may not be combined with used or spent batteries of the type "Batteries, dry, sealed, n.o.s." in the same package. Note also, that the clarification provided in this letter does not apply to batteries that have been reconditioned for reuse.

This letter supersedes the clarification(s) provided in the following letters regarding the applicability of the HMR to the transportation of used or spent dry, sealed batteries:

Ref. No. 09-0090; June 23, 2009

Ref. No. 09-0112; June 23, 2009

Ref. No. 09-0135; June 23, 2009

Ref. No. 09-0150; August 13, 2009

Ref. No. 09-0169; August 28, 2009

I hope this information is helpful. If you have further questions, please contact this office.

Sincerely,

Edward T. Mazzullo

Director

Office of Hazardous Materials Standards

172.101

 

Regulation Sections

Section Subject
172.101 Purpose and use of hazardous materials table