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Interpretation Response #13-0132

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

Interpretation Response Details

Response Publish Date: 08-29-2013
Company Name: Maine Department of Transportation Environmental Office    Individual Name: Mr. Dwight Doughty, Jr.
Location state: ME    Country: US

View the Interpretation Document

Response text:

August 29, 2013



Mr. Dwight Doughty, Jr.
Maine Department of Transportation
Environmental Office
State House Station 16
Augusta, ME   04333

Ref. No. 13-0132

Dear Mr. Doughty:

This responds to your June 12, 2013 request for clarification regarding hazmat training requirements for ferry vessel employees under the Hazardous Materials Regulations (HMR;      49 CFR Parts 171-180).  Specifically, you ask if the hazmat training requirements apply to vessel employees assisting in the positioning of transport vehicles carrying hazardous materials.
According to your letter, state ferry employees assist with positioning transport vehicles onto ferries, based on the size and weight of each transport vehicle.  The employees do not handle, manage, load, unload, or prepare paperwork for the hazardous materials carried by any transport vehicle.  You ask whether state ferry employees who assist in the positioning of transport vehicles carrying hazardous materials are “hazmat employees” as defined in § 171.8.

The HMR defines a hazmat employee as a person who, in the course of employment, directly affects hazardous materials transportation safety.  The definition includes a person who is responsible for safety of transporting hazardous materials.

Transport vehicles carrying hazmat on a ferry vessel must be positioned in accordance with the segregation requirements of § 176.83.  Pursuant to 
§ 176.89(a)(2), a “vessel representative” must direct placement of such transport vehicles.  

State ferry employees who position transport vehicles carrying hazmat to comply with §176.83, or direct placement of such transport vehicles as required by § 176.89(a)(2), directly affect hazardous materials safety and bear responsibility for the safe transportation of hazardous materials.  Such employees are “hazmat employees” and are subject to the training   requirements of §§ 172.700-704.

I hope this answers your inquiry.  If you need additional assistance, please call this office at (202) 366-8553.  


Robert Benedict
Chief, Standards Development Branch
Standards and Rulemaking Division      

176.83, 176.89(a)(2)

Regulation Sections

Section Subject
§ 176.83 Segregation