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Interpretation Response #11-0259 ([ENPAC, LLC] [Mr. Timothy Reed])

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

Interpretation Response Details

Response Publish Date:

Company Name: ENPAC, LLC

Individual Name: Mr. Timothy Reed

Location State: OH Country: US

View the Interpretation Document

Response text:

December 22, 2011



Mr. Timothy Reed
Chief Financial Officer
34355 Vokes Drive
Eastlake, OH 44095

Reference No.: 11-0259

Dear Mr. Reed:

This is in response to your October 18, 2011 letter requesting clarification of the Hazardous Materials Regulations (HMR; 49 CFR Parts 171-180). You ask several questions pertaining to the M number marking on a packaging, training of subcontractors, and design qualification testing of a packaging. 

Your questions are paraphrased and answered as follows:

Q1. Should an M number assigned to your company be used for packagings manufactured by a subcontractor?

A1. Another company cannot use an M number assigned to your company. In accordance with §178.503(a)(8), if a subcontractor manufactures your company"s packagings, they must mark the packaging with their name and address, if permitted for the particular type of packaging, or they must mark the packaging with an M number issued to them.

Q2. Who is responsible for the required hazmat training of a subcontractor"s employees?

A2. In accordance with §172.702(a), the hazmat employer is responsible for ensuring that each of its hazmat employees is trained. However, §172.702(c) provides flexibility on who can provide the training. The training may be provided by your company, the subcontractor, or by some other public or private source.

Q3. Should the subcontractor obtain an M number and should the packagings be marked with the subcontractor"s M number?

A3. See A1.

Q4. Is design qualification testing of the packaging required when a subcontractor begins production?

A4. Section 178.601(c)(1) defines "design qualification testing" as testing for each new or different packaging at the start of production of that packaging. The use of a subcontractor to manufacture an existing packaging does not render the packaging "new" or "different." Therefore, if the packaging has already passed design qualification testing, a subcontractor is not required to conduct the tests at the start of production of the same packaging. This does not, however, relieve the responsibility for conducting the periodic retesting required by §178.601(e) of the packagings manufactured by the subcontractor.

Q5. Is design qualification testing of the packaging required for each change of subcontractors?

A5. See A4.

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


Delmer Billings
Senior Regulatory Advisor
Standards and Rulemaking Division

178.503, 172.702, 178.601

Regulation Sections

Section Subject
172.702 Applicability and responsibility for training and testing
178.503 Marking of packagings
178.601 General requirements