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Interpretation Response #99-0158 ([Premedica Corporation] [Mr. Joseph K. Arsenault])

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

Interpretation Response Details

Response Publish Date:

Company Name: Premedica Corporation

Individual Name: Mr. Joseph K. Arsenault

Location State: MA Country: US

View the Interpretation Document

Response text:

JUL 28, 1999


Mr. Joseph K. Arsenault                Ref.  No. 99-0158
Premedica Corporation
57 Union Street
Worcester, MA; 01608

Dear Mr. Arsenault:

This is in response to your letter dated June 9, 1999, concerning the definition of commerce as specified in § 171.1 of the Hazardous Materials Regulations (HMR; 49 CFR Parts 171-180) as it pertains to transporting infectious substances.

As specified in § 171.1, the HMR govern the safe transportation of hazardous materials in intrastate, interstate and foreign commerce.  The term "in commerce" means the furtherance of a commercial enterprise.  A state agency or local jurisdiction that transports hazardous materials for governmental purposes using its own personnel is not engaged in transportation in commerce, and therefore, not subject to the HMR.  In addition, "in commerce" excludes from regulation the transportation of hazardous materials in a private vehicle where the material is for personal use.

Based upon the scenario that you provided, if Beth Israel Hospital is a non-governmental hospital, the physician is transporting infectious substances in commerce, and therefore, is subject to the HMR.  This includes, but is not limited to, the training requirements under Part 172, Subpart H.

I hope this satisfies your request.



John A. Gale
Transportation Regulations Specialist
Office of Hazardous Materials Standards


Regulation Sections

Section Subject
171.1 Applicability of Hazardous Materials Regulations (HMR) to persons and functions