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Interpretation Response #99-0090 ([Greif Bros. Corporation] [Mr. Joseph J. Grebe])

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

Interpretation Response Details

Response Publish Date:

Company Name: Greif Bros. Corporation

Individual Name: Mr. Joseph J. Grebe

Location State: OH Country: US

View the Interpretation Document

Response text:

September 23, 1999


Mr. Joseph J. Grebe                  Ref. No. 99-0090
Manager, Testing & Technical Service
Greif Bros. Corporation
1201A South Houk Road
Delaware, Ohio 43015

Dear Mr. Grebe:

This is in response to your letter of March 30, 1999, requesting clarification on the maximum gross mass marking requirement for drurns under the Hazardous Materials Regulations (HMR; 49 CFR Parts 171-180).  You provide the following scenario:

A steel drum which is manufactured to the minimum standards required by the HMR weighs 25 kg.  The drum is tested with a net mass of 275 kg for a gross weight of 300kg However, when taking advantage of numerous variations authorized in the HMR (for example, the steel used is now 10% thicker, coatings, a liner, and various decorations are added) the tare weight of the drum is now 3.5 kg heavier.

Your questions are paraphrased and responded to as follows:

Q.   May I mark the drum with a maximum allowable gross weight of 303 kg even though it was tested
to 300 kg?

A.    The answer is no.  A packaging may not be marked to a maximum gross weight that exceeds the  gross weight to which it has been tested.

Q.    Must the net mass in the dram be reduced to compensate for the additional tare weight of the drum?

A.    The answer is yes.

Q.   Should the drum be tested at a level of net weight (275 kg) plus maximum tare weight (28.5 kg) to   be certain that the final gross weights of all drums do not exceed the tested gross weight?

A.  The answer is yes.

Q.   Will customers (i.e., shippers) be required to weigh each drum to determine tare weight and            associated not weight of fill to be certain that they do not exceed the maximum gross weight marked on    the drum?

A.   As provided by 173.24a(b)(2), a non-bulk packaging may not be filled with a hazardous material to a gross mass greater than the maximum gross mass marked on the packaging.  Each offeror of a hazardous materials package is responsible for compliance with this requirement.

I hope this information is helpful.



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


Regulation Sections

Section Subject
178.504 Standards for steel drums