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Interpretation Response #09-0248 ([Dangerous Goods Advisory Council] [Mr. Frits Wybenga])

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

Interpretation Response Details

Response Publish Date:

Company Name: Dangerous Goods Advisory Council

Individual Name: Mr. Frits Wybenga

Location State: DC Country: US

View the Interpretation Document

Response text:

April 13, 2010




Mr. Frits Wybenga

Technical Director

Dangerous Goods Advisory Council

Suite 740

1100 H Street, NW

Washington, DC 20005

Ref. No.: 09-0248

Dear Mr. Wybenga:

This is in response to your November 4, 2009 e-mail regarding my response to a question raised in a letter (Ref. No. 09-0118) concerning acceptable shipping descriptions for an import shipment of a combustible liquid under the Hazardous Materials Regulations (HMR; 49 CFR Parts 171-180). The letter in question indicated that a bulk packaging containing a combustible liquid with a flashpoint of 79 °C (174 °F) being imported into the United States by vessel may be described using the identification number and proper shipping name "NA1270, Petroleum oil."

You suggest that there is no regulatory basis for allowing a Hazardous Materials Table (HMT) entry listed with a UN identification number to be changed to an NA number for a combustible liquid not subject to the international regulations. You also suggest that if the change from a UN to an NA identification number is permitted, the identification number and proper shipping name "NA 1993, Combustible liquid" is more appropriate.

The MSDS submitted with the incoming letter identifies the material as "UN1268, Petroleum distillates, n.o.s., Combustible liquid, PG III." Since § 172.101(d)(4) permits modification of the Class 3 reference in Column 3 of the HMT to read "Combustible liquid" when that material has a flash point above 60 ºC (140 ºF) but below 93 ºC (200 ºF), this shipping description is acceptable under the HMR. The shipping description suggested in the incoming letter " "NA1270, Petroleum oil" - is also acceptable; petroleum oil is included in the petroleum distillate family and the "NA1270, Petroleum oil" shipping description entry is listed in the HMT. The HMR authorize these shipping descriptions and therefore an approval under § 172.101(l)(2) is not needed. Note that

since the HMR require a shipper to use the name in the HMT that most appropriately describes the material, use of the name "Petroleum oil" is preferable to the name "Combustible liquid" (see § 172.101(c)(12)(ii)).

I trust this responds to your inquiry. Please contact us if we can be of further assistance.


Hattie L. Mitchell

Chief, Regulatory Review and Reinvention

Office of Hazardous Materials Standards

172.101, 173.22

Regulation Sections

Section Subject
172.101 Purpose and use of hazardous materials table
173.22 Shipper's responsibility