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Interpretation Response #16-0014 ([COSTHA] [Ms. L'Gena Shaffer])

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

Interpretation Response Details

Response Publish Date:

Company Name: COSTHA

Individual Name: Ms. L'Gena Shaffer

Location State: NY Country: US

View the Interpretation Document

Response text:

July 20, 2016

L’Gena Shaffer
10 Hunter Brook Lane
Queensbury, NY 12804

Ref. No. 16-0014

Dear Ms. Shaffer:

This responds to your January 26, 2015 email requesting clarification of the Hazardous Materials Regulations (HMR; 49 CFR Parts 171-180) applicable to IBC codes.  Specifically, you note that a final rule published on January 8, 2015 [(HM-215M); 80 FR 1075] amended the HMR to authorize certain solid materials to be packaged in accordance with Special Provision “IB8” (IBC code).  Additionally, you state that this change is not reflected in §§ 178.702(a)(1) and 178.707(a)(5) given that both sections indicate that a packaging meeting the requirements for a Specification 31HZ1 IBC is only authorized for liquids.  You ask if this was an editorial oversight.

The answer is no.  Sections 178.702(a) and 178.707(a) address nomenclature for UN Specification IBCs designed for transport of liquids.  We do not believe a conforming change needs to be implemented.  Final rule HM-215M did reinstate UN specification 31HZ1, along with several other UN specification IBCs, for liquid material as authorized packaging under IBC Codes IB4 through IB8 assigned to certain solid material.  Prior to removal of the IBC specifications (for liquids) from IBC Codes IB4 through IB8 under rulemakings HM-215K [76 FR 3307] and HM-215L [78 FR 987] there was not an indication in either §§ 178.702(a)(1) or 178.707(a)(5) that solids were authorized in these packagings.  Moreover, there was also not an indication in §§ 178.705(a) and 178.706(a) for metal and rigid IBCs, respectively, designed for liquids that were also authorized packagings for certain solids.  Making a conforming edit would entail more than just the sections you reference associated with UN Specification 31HZ1 IBC.  Furthermore, this provision of the HMR is currently harmonized with the revisions to the UN Model Regulations.  

At this time, we do not believe an amendment to include a reference to solid materials is necessary or appropriate.

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

Dirk Der Kinderen
Chief, Standards Development Branch
Standards and Rulemaking Division

178.702(a)(1), 178.707(a)(5), 178.705(a), 178.706(a)

Regulation Sections

Section Subject
178.702 IBC codes
178.705 Standards for metal IBCs
178.706 Standards for rigid plastic IBCs
178.707 Standards for composite IBCs