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Interpretation Response #13-0229

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

Interpretation Response Details

Response Publish Date: 01-16-2014
Company Name: C&E Dot compliance Consultants LLC    Individual Name: Mr. Christopher Widman
Location state: MN    Country: US

View the Interpretation Document

Response text:

January 16, 2014


Mr. Christopher Widman
C&E DOT Compliance Consultants LLC
9465 Jefferson Street NE
Blaine, MN 55434

Ref. No.: 13-0229

Dear Mr. Widman:

This is in response to your email dated November 19, 2013, requesting clarification of the Hazardous Materials Regulations (HMR; 49 CFR Parts 171-180) relating to the shipment of Class 1 (explosive) material by vessel.  You present a scenario where Class 1 material will be shipped from the Czech Republic to Indonesia via the Port of Norfolk, Virginia.  The material will not be imported into or transported on a public highway within the United States.  However, the material will be transloaded from one ship to another while in the Port of Norfolk, Virginia.  Your questions are paraphrased and answered as follows.

Q1. Is a United States Competent Authority Approval required for entry into the Port of Norfolk, Virginia even though the Class 1 material is not being imported into the United States?

A1. HMR § 171.26(d) provides that Class 1 (explosive) material other than Division 1.1 and 1.2 passing through the United States in the course of being shipped between locations outside the United States may be offered and accepted for transportation within a single port area when packaged, marked, classed, labeled, stowed, and segregated in accordance with the International Maritime Dangerous Goods (IMDG) Code.  The shipment is subject to the requirements of subparts C and F of part 172 of the HMR pertaining to shipping papers and placarding, and must also conform to the applicable requirements of part 176 of the HMR pertaining to carriage by vessel.

Chapter of the IMDG Code provides that prior to transportation all explosive substances and articles must be approved by the competent authority of the country of manufacture.  The IMDG Code does not require explosive substances or articles to have a competent authority approval from the country of destination or a country where transloading operations occur.

Therefore, if the Class 1 material being shipped is not Division 1.1 or 1.2, a United States Competent Authority Approval is not required for entry into and transloading at the Port of Norfolk, Virginia.  If the material is classed as Division 1.1 or 1.2 then a United States
Competent Authority Approval from the Associate Administrator of the Pipeline and Hazardous Materials Safety Administration (PHMSA) is required.  

Q2. What are the HMR and International Maritime Dangerous Goods (IMDG) Code regulations relating to Competent Authority Approval requirements for shipping Class 1 material in United States ports?

A2. See A1.

I trust this information is helpful.  If you have further questions, please do not hesitate to contact this office.


Duane A. Pfund
International Standards Coordinator
Standards and Rulemaking Division


Regulation Sections

Section Subject
§ 171.26 Additional requirements for the use of the IAEA Regulations