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Interpretation Response #09-0204 ([Applied Cleaning Technologies, Inc.] [Mr. Paul A. Ackermann])

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

Interpretation Response Details

Response Publish Date:

Company Name: Applied Cleaning Technologies, Inc.

Individual Name: Mr. Paul A. Ackermann

Location State: MI Country: US

View the Interpretation Document

Response text:

October 13, 2009




Mr. Paul A. Ackermann

Applied Cleaning Technologies, Inc.

900 Oak Pointe Lane

Northville, MI 48167

Ref. No. 09-0204

Dear Mr. Ackermann:

This responds to your August 18, 2009 letter and telephone discussion with a member of my staff requesting clarification of the applicability of the Hazardous Materials Regulations (HMR; 49 CFR Parts 171-180) to the transportation of Class 8 (corrosive) materials. Specifically, you ask whether the cleaning products your company ships may be transported as limited quantities in accordance with § 173.154. In addition, you ask whether the cleaning products also qualify for transport as consumer commodities.

According to your letter, your company currently transports sodium hydroxide solution (30% w/w) and potassium hydroxide solution (30% w/w) in bottles packaged in UN certified cartons. Each bottle has a capacity of 40 fl. oz.; with 12 bottles to a carton. The material safety data sheets (MSDS) for your cleaning products include toxicological data that you believe may require the products to be classed and transported as Division 6.1 material.

With regard to the proper classification of your products, the data presented in the MSDS for the sodium hydroxide solution is inconclusive because the results are from testing methods not authorized for use in classifying a material as Division 6.1 (poisonous) material under the HMR (see § 173.132). Moreover, there is nothing in the transport history for sodium hydroxide solutions (nor for potassium hydroxide solutions) to suggest that these materials should be assigned a Division 6.1 subsidiary hazard. Therefore, it is the opinion of this Office that your sodium hydroxide solution should be classed as a Class 8 (corrosive) material.

As currently packaged, your cleaning products are not eligible for the limited quantity exceptions provided in § 173.154 because the material is packaged in 40 fl. oz. (1.2 L) bottles. The limited quantity exceptions require liquid corrosive materials in Packing Group (PG) II to be packaged in combination packagings with inner packagings not exceeding 1.0 L (0.3 gallon). In addition, in accordance with the conditions of § 173.154, the 12-pack carton must conform to the general packaging provisions of Part 173, Subpart B and may not exceed 30 kg (66 pounds) gross weight.

As defined in § 171.8, a consumer commodity is a material that is packaged and distributed in a form intended or suitable for sale through retail sales agencies for personal or household use. Based on the information regarding the end use of your cleaning products provided in your letter, your products meet the definition of consumer commodity. Thus, provided all applicable conditions of § 173.154 are met including the quantity limitations for corrosive material in PG II in paragraph (b), they may be renamed "Consumer commodity" and reclassed and transported as ORM-D materials; shipments of ORM-D materials are eligible for additional exceptions provided in § 173.156.

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


Charles E. Betts

Chief, Standards Development

Office of Hazardous Materials Standards

173.154, 171.8, 173.15

Regulation Sections

Section Subject
171.8 Definitions and abbreviations
173.154 Exceptions for Class 8 (corrosive materials)
173.156 Exceptions for limited quantity and ORM