USA Banner

Official US Government Icon

Official websites use .gov
A .gov website belongs to an official government organization in the United States.

Secure Site Icon

Secure .gov websites use HTTPS
A lock ( ) or https:// means you’ve safely connected to the .gov website. Share sensitive information only on official, secure websites.

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

Interpretation Response #10-0164 ([Edgcomb Law Group] [Mr. John Edgcomb])

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

Interpretation Response Details

Response Publish Date:

Company Name: Edgcomb Law Group

Individual Name: Mr. John Edgcomb

Location State: CA Country: US

View the Interpretation Document

Response text:

October 13, 2010



Mr. John Edgcomb

Edgcomb Law Group

115 Sansome Street, Suite 700

San Francisco, CA 94104

Ref. No.: 10-0164

Dear Mr. Edgcomb:

This responds to your letter dated July 23, 2010 regarding the requirements for shipping a "Consumer commodity, ORM-D" material in accordance with the Hazardous Materials Regulations (HMR; 49 CFR Parts 171-180). According to your letter, your client is a pharmaceutical distributor, and proposes to unitize products classified as "Consumer commodity, ORM-D" into securely fastened, plastic boxes ("totes") for delivery from its distribution centers to its customers by contract carrier. On occasion the contract carrier delivers the unitized products to a cross-dock under exclusive use by the motor carrier or your client where the unitized products are transferred to multiple smaller private carriers to be delivered directly to the customers. You ask, would the exception from marking in § 173.156(b)(1) apply to these ORM-D materials.

Consumer commodity, ORM-D materials may be transported utilizing the exceptions in

§ 173.156(b)(1), including the exception from the marking requirements of Subpart D of Part 172 (i.e., "ORM-D" marking), provided the material is (1) unitized in cages, carts, boxes, or similar overpacks; (2) offered for transportation or transported by rail, private or contract motor carrier; or common carrier in a vehicle under exclusive use for such service; and (3) transported to or from a manufacturer, a distribution center, or a retail outlet, or transported to a disposal facility from one offeror. The exception in § 173.156(b)(1) applies to ORM-D material provided all of the conditions are satisfied. The exception may be used when unitized ORM-D products are transferred from one

transport vehicle to another at a cross-dock location, provided both carriers qualify for the exception in accordance with condition (2) above, and the materials remain unitized in accordance with § 173.156(b)(1),(i.e., the material is not removed from the unitized boxes and totes when transferred to the smaller carriers at the cross-dock location).

I hope this information is helpful. If we can be of further assistance, please contact us.


Ben Supko

Acting Chief, Standards Development

Office of Hazardous Materials Standards


Regulation Sections

Section Subject
173.156 Exceptions for limited quantity and ORM