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

Interpretation Response #12-0067 ([Bechtel Corporation] [Ms. Yuliana S. Wu])

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

Interpretation Response Details

Response Publish Date:

Company Name: Bechtel Corporation

Individual Name: Ms. Yuliana S. Wu

Location State: TX Country: US

View the Interpretation Document

Response text:

July 19, 2012



Ms. Yuliana S. Wu
Bechtel Corporation
3000 Post Oak Blvd.
Houston, TX 77056

Ref. No.: 12-0067

Dear Ms. Wu:

This responds to your e-mail dated February 29, 2012, requesting clarification of the Hazardous Materials Regulations (HMR; 49 CFR Parts 171-180) applicable to the definitions of a "hazmat employer" and "hazmat employee" as well as the associated training of a "hazmat employee."

In your email you describe a scenario in which all the materials and equipment sourced and transported to your company"s construction projects are purchased from suppliers who pack and ship materials and equipment from their facilities. The materials and equipment, which may include hazardous materials as defined by the HMR, are never handled by your company"s traffic and logistics personnel. Furthermore, your company"s traffic and logistic personnel do not prepare any shipping documents for these shipments. However; your company"s traffic and logistics personnel are responsible for coordinating the movement with suppliers, export packers, freight forwarders, or air or ocean carriers. Based on this scenario, you ask if your company is considered a "hazmat employer" and if your company"s traffic and logistics employees are considered "hazmat employees," and therefore required to be trained under the HMR.

As defined in § 171.8, a "hazmat employee" is any person who is employed in a full-time, part-time, or temporary basis by a hazmat employer and who in the course of employment directly affects hazardous materials transportation safety. Section 171.8 also defines a "hazmat employer" to mean a person who employs or uses at least one hazmat employee on a full-time, part time, or temporary basis, and who: (1) transports hazardous materials in commerce; (2) causes hazardous materials to be transported in commerce; or (3) designs, manufactures, fabricates, inspects, marks, maintains, reconditions, repairs or tests a package, container, or packaging component that is represented, marked, certified, or sold by that person as qualified for use in transporting hazardous materials in commerce. (See § 171.8 for the complete definitions of "hazmat employee" and "hazmat employer.") As specified in § 172.702, a hazmat employer must ensure that each of its hazmat employees is trained in accordance with the requirements in Subpart H of Part 172.

Based on the information provided in your letter, it does not appear that your company"s traffic and logistics personnel "directly affect hazardous materials transportation safety." Therefore, your company"s traffic and logistics employees would not be considered hazmat employees and would not be subject to the training requirements in Subpart H of Part 172. In addition, based strictly on the limited business functions you described in your letter, your company would not be considered a hazmat employer.

I hope this answers your inquiry. If we can be of further assistance, please contact us at (202) 366-8553.



Ben Supko
Senior Regulations Officer
Standards and Rulemaking Division

171.8, 172.702

Regulation Sections

Section Subject
171.8 Definitions and abbreviations
172.702 Applicability and responsibility for training and testing