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Interpretation Response #11-0226 ([Spec Ops Company] [Jason Romero])

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

Interpretation Response Details

Response Publish Date:

Company Name: Spec Ops Company

Individual Name: Jason Romero

Location State: LA Country: US

View the Interpretation Document

Response text:

January 30, 2012


Mr. Jason Romero
Spec Ops Company
Bristow Bayou Road
Broussard, Louisiana 70518

Ref. No.: 11-0226

Dear Mr. Romero:

This responds to your e-mail to Mr. Shawn Wolsey of PHMSA's Office of the Chief Counsel regarding "Orange Smoke" used as a signaling device under the Hazardous Materials Regulations (HMR; 49 CFR Parts 171-180). You enclosed a photograph of the device.

Based on a previous letter to another company concerning a life saving kit containing flares or orange smoke bombs, in addition to other life saving devices, you believe that your product is the same and should be described as "Life saving appliances, not self-inflating," in Class 9. Specifically, you ask whether a material described as "Signal devices, hand, 1.4G, UN0191, PGII," is the correct shipping description for your orange smoke bombs, and if they may be reclassed and renamed as "Consumer Commodity, ORM-D", and shipped as such for purposes of transportation in commerce.

You did not provide any detailed or specific information on the constituents or the hazard characteristics of your product. Under 49 CFR §173.22, it is the shipper's responsibility to properly classify and describe a hazardous material in accordance with Parts 172 and 173 of the HMR. Such determinations are not required to be verified by this Office.

In your e-mail (6/20/11), you described your product (orange smoke) as "Signal devices, hand, 1.4G, UN0191, PGII." In accordance with the HMR, a material described as "Signal devices, hand, 1.4G, UN0191, PGII" must be offered and transported as such. In order to reclass and rename your product as a "Consumer commodity, ORM-D," it must meet the definition of a consumer commodity in §171.8, and there must be a limited quantity packaging exception in Column 8A of the §172.101 Hazardous Materials Table (§172.101 HMT) for that entry that also contains a provision allowing reclassification to consumer commodity. Therefore, since there are no limited quantity packaging exceptions for the description "Signal devices, hand, 1.4G, UN0191, PGII," you may not reclass, rename or ship this product as a "Consumer Commodity, ORM-D" in transportation in commerce.

For your information, a life-saving appliance, self-inflating or not-self-inflating, in Class 9, containing small quantities of hazardous materials that are required as part of the life-saving appliance must conform to the requirements of §173.219 (a) and (b). Such products may also not be shipped as a "Consumer commodity, ORM-D" in transportation in commerce because there are no limited quantity packaging exceptions for that entry in the §172.101 HMT, and thus, no consumer commodity provisions.

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


Ben Supko
Acting Chief, Standards Development Branch
Office of Hazardous Materials Standards

172.101, 173.219, 173.22


Regulation Sections

Section Subject
171.8 Definitions and abbreviations
172.101 Purpose and use of hazardous materials table
173.219 Life-saving appliances
173.22 Shipper's responsibility