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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 #98-0511 ([Environmental, Health & Safety] [Mr. Joseph W. Gentile])

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

Interpretation Response Details

Response Publish Date:

Company Name: Environmental, Health & Safety

Individual Name: Mr. Joseph W. Gentile

Location State: NJ Country: US

View the Interpretation Document

Response text:

FEB 23, 1998


Mr. Joseph W. Gentile
Director - Environmental, Health & Safety
40 Avenue A
Bayonne, NJ 07002

Dear Mr. Gentile:

This is in response to your letter dated October 13, 1997, regarding a discrepancy in the classification and quantity limitations for "Sulfur" or "Sulphur" shipped domestically in accordance with the Hazardous Materials Regulations and the International Air Transport Association's (lATA) standards. You asked for confirmation that packages of less than 400 kg are exempt from regulation, and that there are no quantity limitations of 25 kg for passenger-carrying aircraft, or 100 kg for cargo-only aircraft.

The lATA regulations do not have official standing under the U.S. Hazardous Materials Regulations (HMR; 49 CFR Parts 171-180). The regulations recognized by the HMR and authorized in 49 CFR 171.11 as an alternative to compliance with 49 CFR requirements are the International Civil Aviation Organization's Technical Instructions for the Safe Transport of Dangerous Goods by Air (lCAO Technical Instructions). In accordance with the ICAO Technical Instructions, a material described as "Sulphur, 4.1, UN 1350, III" is regulated for international transportation by aircraft as a "Division 4.1 (flammable solid)" material; however, there are no quantity limitations per package aboard passenger-carrying or cargo¬carrying aircraft. The ICAO Technical Instructions special provision "A105" excepts Sulphur from regulation when it is transported in quantities of less than 400 kg per package, or when it has been formed to a specific shape (e.g., prills, granules, pellets, pastilles or flakes).

In accordance with the HMR, a material described as "Sulfur, 9, NA 1350, III" is regulated as a "Class 9" material when shipped in domestic transportation. Special provision "30" in 49 CFR 172.102 excepts "Sulfur" from regulation if transported domestically in a non-bulk packaging or is formed to a specific shape (e.g., prills, granules, pellets, pastilles, or flakes). In the 49 CFR 172.101 Hazardous Materials Table, in Columns "9A" and "9B", quantity limitations are specified of 25 kg on passenger-carrying- aircraft and 1 00 kg for cargo-only aircraft.

Thank you for bringing this issue to our attention; you are correct that there is a discrepancy in that the HMR specifies quantity limitations on passenger-carrying and cargo-only aircraft, where as the ICOA Technical Instructions specifies "No Limit" on both passenger and cargo-carrying aircraft. On May 06, 1997, a final rule under Docket HM-215B [62 FR 24690] was published which made changes to the "Sulfur" or "Sulphur" entries, although this issue was not addressed. However, this issue will be addressed in future rulemaking.

I hope this information is helpful. If we can be of further assistance, please contact us.



Delmer F. Billings
Chief, Regulations Development
Office of Hazardous Materials Standards

Regulation Sections

Section Subject
173.26 Quantity limitations