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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 #15-0235 ([Airgas-SAFECOR] [Mr. John Anderson])

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

Interpretation Response Details

Response Publish Date:

Company Name: Airgas-SAFECOR

Individual Name: Mr. John Anderson

Location State: WY Country: US

View the Interpretation Document

Response text:

July 6, 2016

Mr. John Anderson
P.O. Box 20067
Cheyenne, WY  82003

Reference No. 15-0235

Dear Mr. Anderson:

This letter is in response to your November 20, 2015 email and May 27, 2016 telephone call requesting clarification of the Hazardous Materials Regulations (HMR; 49 CFR Parts 171-180) applicable to Department of Transportation (DOT) cylinders authorized under DOT Exemption (DOT-E) 8404.  Section 173.23(e) permits these cylinders to continue to be used provided they are marked “DOT-4L” in compliance with § 178.57 before or at the time of the first required retest after October 1, 1984.  Specifically, you state your company has acquired 20 cylinders marked with this exemption number that are not marked “DOT 4L.”  We have paraphrased and answered your questions as follows:  

Q1. Does § 173.23(e) require that a filled cylinder manufactured in conformance with DOT-E 8404 be remarked for a DOT 4L welded insulated cylinder specification and service pressure before January 1, 1986, to be continued in use?

A1. Cylinders filled prior to their reauthorization date may remain in service until emptied and may be transported in commerce provided all applicable HMR requirements are met (see § 180.205(c)).  An emptied cylinder due for requalification may not be refilled and offered for transportation unless it has been requalified in accordance with the HMR.  Section 173.23(e) does not permit the requalification of DOT-E 8404 cylinders that are not remarked DOT 4L before or on January 1, 1986.  You stated that the cylinders you found do not meet this requirement; thus, they do not comply with the HMR and may only be authorized for transportation under the terms of a special permit.  If you decide to apply for a special permit for these cylinders, you may submit an application to the Associate Administrator for Hazardous Materials Safety in conformance with the requirements prescribed in 49 CFR Part 107, Subpart B.  Information on the special permit application process is also available from our website at or by contacting PHMSA’s Approvals and Permits Division at (202) 366-4511.

Q2. If a DOT-E 8404 cylinder was not remarked for compliance with the DOT 4L specification and service pressure before January 1, 1986, must the container be condemned?

A2. The answer is no.  A cylinder that is serviceable for transportation may be authorized for transport under the terms of a special permit as explained in Answer A1.  If, however, the cylinder is determined to be unserviceable and unable to be restored by repair, rebuilding, requalification, or any other procedure, then it must be condemned (see § 180.203 for the “condemned” definition and § 180.205(i) for cylinder conditions that require condemnation).  

I hope this information is helpful.  Please contact us if we can be of further assistance.


T. Glenn Foster
Chief, Regulatory Review and Reinvention
Standards and Rulemaking Division
178.57, 180.205(c), 180.203

Regulation Sections

Section Subject
178.57 Specification 4L welded insulated cylinders
180.203 Definitions
180.205 General requirements for requalification of specification cylinders