Search

Question of the Week: Changes for Combustible Liquids?

Posted on 5/17/2011 by Lion Technology Inc.

Q. We ship a mineral spirits product that has a flashpoint of 120ºF in 55-gallon drums. The product has no other DOT hazards and is only shipped by highway. We have been using the opportunity that the DOT provided at 49 CFR 173.150(f) to reclassify our product as a combustible liquid so that we can take advantage of the exception at 49 CFR 173.120(b)(2). We heard that the DOT is eliminating the combustible liquid designation. What will this mean for our shipments?
 
A. The Pipeline and Hazardous Materials Safety Administration (PHMSA) did publish an Advanced Notice of Proposed Rulemaking (ANPRM) on April 5, 2010 [75 FR 17111]. The purpose of the ANPRM was to gather input from the public on effect of elimination of the combustible liquid category within the hazardous materials regulations (49 CFR 171-180). Currently, the international hazardous materials regulations do not have a designation for combustible liquids. If the DOT pursues this rulemaking, it would be to harmonize their rules with the international standards, provided it does not diminish the safety of transporting hazardous materials within the United States. If the DOT eventually finalizes a regulation eliminating the combustible liquid category, this would mean two things:
 
  1. Liquids with flashpoints above 140ºF, possessing no other DOT hazards, would no longer be subject to the hazardous materials regulations (unless they are hazardous wastes, hazardous substances, or marine pollutants), and 
  2. Liquids, such as your mineral spirits, with flashpoints between 100ºF and 140ºF would have to be shipped as Class 3 flammable liquids. 
It is important to remember that currently, the DOT has only published an ANPRM. They have yet to even publish a Notice of Proposed Rulemaking. Based on the fall 2010 Semi-Annual Regulatory Agenda, the DOT planned on publishing the proposed rule in March 2011; however, this action has yet to be completed. Once a proposed rule is published in the Federal Register, there will be an open public comment period followed by Department deliberation, and then a final rule.
 
Unless and until a final rule is published, you may continue to take advantage of the relief provided at 49 CFR 173.150(f) for reclassed, non-bulk shipments of combustible liquids shipped domestically, by ground.
 
 
For more information on hazardous material classification attend Lion Technology’s Hazmat Ground Shipper Certification (DOT) Workshop, coming soon to a city near you!
 

Tags: DOT, hazmat shipping, new rules

Find a Post

Compliance Archives

Lion - Quotes

Excellent job. Made what is very dry material interesting. Thoroughly explained all topics in easy-to-understand terms.

David Hertvik

Vice President

These are the best commercial course references I have seen (10+ years). Great job!

Ed Grzybowski

EHS & Facility Engineer

Best instructor ever! I was going to take my DOT training w/a different provider, but based on this presentation, I will also be doing my DOT training w/Lion!

Donna Moot

Hazardous Waste Professional

The price was reasonable, the time to complete the course was manageable, and the flexibility the online training allowed made it easy to complete.

Felicia Rutledge

Hazmat Shipping Professional

The instructor created a great learning environment.

Avinash Thummadi

CAD & Environmental Manager

The instructor did an excellent job presenting a very dry subject; keeping everyone interested and making it enjoyable.

Marc Bugg

Hazardous Waste Professional

Excellent course. Very interactive. Explanations are great whether you get the questions wrong or right.

Gregory Thompson

Environmental, Health & Safety Regional Manager

The instructor took a rather drab set of topics and brought them to life with realistic real-life examples.

Tom Berndt

HSE Coordinator

Very witty instructor, made the long times sitting bearable. One of the few training courses I can say I actually enjoyed.

John Hutchinson

Senior EHS Engineer

Lion's training was by far the best online RCRA training I've ever taken. It was challenging and the layout was great!

Paul Harbison

Hazardous Waste Professional

Download Our Latest Whitepaper

Spot and correct 4 of the most common universal waste errors before they result in a notice of violation during a Federal or state inspection.

Latest Whitepaper

By submitting your phone number, you agree to receive recurring marketing and training text messages. Consent to receive text messages is not required for any purchases. Text STOP at any time to cancel. Message and data rates may apply. View our Terms & Conditions and Privacy Policy.