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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 #14-0026 ([Working Solutions, Inc.] [Mr. Jay Davis])

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

Interpretation Response Details

Response Publish Date:

Company Name: Working Solutions, Inc.

Individual Name: Mr. Jay Davis

Location State: TX Country: US

View the Interpretation Document

Response text:

March 18, 2014

Mr. Jay Davis
Working Solutions, Inc.
2522 Roy Circle
Houston, Texas    77007

Ref. No. 14-0026

Dear Mr. Davis:

This responds to your February 6, 2014 request for clarification on marking and labeling under the Hazardous Materials Regulations (HMR; 49 CFR Parts 171-180).  Specifically, you seek to include the applicable HMR proper shipping description and miniaturized hazard labels on a single container label with the Globally Harmonized System of Classification and Labelling of Chemicals (GHS) elements.

In your letter you indicate you want to provide the GHS hazard communication elements on your container labels, and in a segregated section of that label, you want to include the proper shipping description and 1 ½ inch by 1 ½ inch miniaturized version of hazard warning  labels required by the HMR. You believe these container labels will assist your employees that package products that are regulated as hazardous materials under the HMR.  You indicated the miniaturized labels will not replace applicable 4 inch by 4 inch hazard warning labels required under the HMR.  Applicable labels required by the HMR will be applied to the containers before being offered for transportation.  You ask if a sample GHS based container label you provide (see enclosed) is authorized and complies with marking and labeling requirements under the HMR?

Section § 172.401(b) prohibits the transportation of a package bearing any marking or label which by its color, design, or shape could be confused or conflict with a hazard warning label prescribed in the HMR.  Pictograms (on labels) developed in accordance with the labeling procedures of the GHS and displayed on packages used in transportation are not prohibited under § 172.401.  The pictograms employed by the GHS were developed based largely on the existing hazard communication standards for transport to ensure consistency of hazard communication for a variety of applications and contexts.  As such, the GHS pictograms are intentionally consistent with the symbols used in the labels and placards required by the HMR and used in international regulations and standards including the International Civil Aviation Organization's Technical Instructions on the Safe Transport of Dangerous Goods, the International Maritime Dangerous Goods Code, and the United Nations Recommendations on the Transport of Dangerous Goods. Therefore, when displayed in accordance with the GHS, we do not consider these pictograms to be confusing or conflicting in accordance with                   § 172.401(b) of the HMR.

It should be noted that prior to transportation required markings should meet the requirements of Subpart D of Part 172 of the HMR and required labeling should meet the requirements in Subpart E of Part 172 of the HMR.  Further, the 1 ½ inch by 1 ½ inch miniaturized version of hazard warning labels would not meet the size requirements of § 172.407.

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


Regulation Sections

Section Subject
172.401 Prohibited labeling