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Interpretation Response #10-0186 ([URS Corporation] [Ms. Erin N. Jarman])

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

Interpretation Response Details

Response Publish Date:

Company Name: URS Corporation

Individual Name: Ms. Erin N. Jarman

Location State: NC Country: US

View the Interpretation Document

Response text:

October 29, 2010




Ms. Erin N. Jarman

URS Corporation

1600 Perimeter Park Drive, Suite 400

Morrisville, NC 27560

Reference No.: 10-0186

Dear Ms. Jarman:

This responds to your September 1, 2010 letter regarding packaging requirements for diesel fuel under the Hazardous Materials Regulations (HMR; 49 CFR Parts 171-180). Your questions are paraphrased and answered as follows:

Q1. Is it possible for a packaging to be tested and dual-marked as both an Intermediate Bulk Container (IBC) and a portable tank?

A1. The answer is no. An IBC is defined by the HMR as a rigid or flexible portable packaging, other than a cylinder or specification portable tank, that is designed for mechanical handling (see § 171.8).

Q2. If an IBC has not been tested according to the retest requirements set forth in 49 CFR Part 178, Subpart O, must the UN marking be removed or obliterated to continue to be used?

A2. The requirements applicable to IBC retesting are set forth in 49 CFR Part 178, Subpart O and reference specifically Part 180, Subpart D. As provided by § 173.35, when an IBC is identified as an UN specification container by the specification plate, it must meet the specification and be retested in accordance with Part 180, Subpart D regardless of whether the material is hazardous or not. If an IBC has not been retested, one must obliterate, cover, or make illegible the specification identification on the specification plate in order for the IBC to continue to be used as a non-specification container without being retested.

Q3. By removing or obliterating the UN Marking of the IBC, it is our understanding based on DOT interpretation Letter Ref. No. 08-0286 that this packaging could be considered a non-specification bulk packaging. Is that correct?

A3. The answer is yes. The previously issued interpretation (Ref. No. 08-0286) you cite in your inquiry remains valid. Because the specification markings are destroyed, removed, or covered, the packaging no longer meets the standards of an IBC in accordance with the HMR. The packaging in your scenario is a non-specification bulk packaging.

Q4. If the answer to Q3 is yes, could this non-specification bulk packaging satisfy the packaging requirements found in § 173.241, which permits the use of non-specification portable tanks for the transportation of high flashpoint diesel fuel?

A4. The answer is yes. If the specification markings are destroyed, removed, or covered, the packaging no longer meets the standards of a specification packaging in accordance with the HMR. Therefore, the packaging is a non-specification bulk packaging and can be considered a non-specification portable tank. In accordance with § 172.102 special provision B1, a material with a flash point at or above 38o C (100o F) and below 93o C (200o F) can use the bulk packaging requirements in § 173.241, which allow for the use of non-specification portable tanks.

I hope this satisfies your inquiry. Please contact us if we can be of further assistance.


T. Glenn Foster

Chief, Regulatory Review and Reinvention

Office of Hazardous Materials Standards

171.8, 173.35, 172.102, 180 Subpart D

Regulation Sections

Section Subject
171.8 Definitions and abbreviations
173.241 Bulk packagings for certain low hazard liquid and solid materials
173.35 Hazardous materials in IBCs