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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 #19-0065

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

Interpretation Response Details

Response Publish Date:

Company Name: Freeman Manufacturing & Supply Company

Individual Name: Ben Inman

Location State: OH Country: US

View the Interpretation Document

Response text:

September 20, 2019

Ben Inman
Import/Export Analyst 1101 Moore Rd
Avon, OH  44011

Reference No. 19-0065

Dear Mr. Inman:

This letter is in response to your May 28, 2019, email requesting clarification of the Hazardous Materials Regulations (HMR; 49 CFR Parts 171-180) applicable to the transportation of marine pollutants. Specifically, you ask for clarification of the exceptions provided for marine pollutants in § 171.4(c).

We have paraphrased and answered your questions as follows:

Q1. You state that your company ships hazardous materials described as "UN3082, Environmentally hazardous substance, liquid, n.o.s., 9, III," with varied technical names in non-bulk quantities. You also mention that your company ships these materials domestically via motor vehicle, rail car, or aircraft, and ask whether these materials may be shipped under the exceptions in § 171.4(c)(1).

A1. The answer is yes. As prescribed in § 171.4(c)(1), except when all or part of the transportation is by vessel, the requirements of the HMR specific to marine pollutants do not apply to non-bulk packagings transported by motor vehicle, rail car, or aircraft.

Q2. You ask whether a marine pollutant that meets the exceptions provided in § 171.4(c)(1) must also meet the requirements in § 171.4(c)(2).

A2. The answer is no. Paragraphs (c)(1) and (c)(2) are standalone provisions for exceptions from the marine pollutant requirements of the HMR. Section 171.4(c)(2) specifically provides an alternative exception for marine pollutants shipped by all modes, including vessel, provided the single or combination packagings have a net quantity per single or inner packaging of 5 L (1.3 gallons) or less for liquids and 5 kg (11 lbs) or less net mass for solids and are packaged in accordance with the general requirements of §§ 173.24 and 173.24a. Please note that this response is based on the understanding the hazardous material in the example provided is a hazardous material based solely on marine pollutant criteria. If the hazardous material meets Class 1 through 8 criteria or other Class 9 criteria (i.e., hazardous substance), it is still subject to the HMR.

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


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

171.4(c), 171.4(c)(2), 173.24, 173.24a


Regulation Sections

Section Subject
171.4 Marine pollutants
173.24 General requirements for packagings and packages