DOT Interpretations

Taken largely from Dana Willaford's Advanced RAM Packaging and Transportation Workshop, this page contains links to local pages addressing regulatory interpretations relevant to transportation of radioactive materials.   The material is available Adobe Acrobat format only.   If you do not have the Acrobat Reader and wish to download it, click hereExternal Link


Interpretations from DOT's RSPA and PHMSA
Year of
 Reference Letter  Issue Addressed
2020  T. Foster to R. Natali  Clarification regarding "Packaging Manufacturer" as it is referenced in § 178.350 for DOT Specification 7A Packaging 
 RSPA = Research and Special Programs Administration
 PHMSA = Pipeline and Hazardous Materials Safety Administration
 HMTA = Hazardous Materials Transportation Act
 HMTUSA = Hazardous Materials Transportation Uniform Safety Act
 HMR = Hazardous Materials Regulations
 GOCO = Government-Owned, Contractor-Operated
 GOGO = Government-Owned, Government-Operated
1990 J. Kaleta to S. Denny (DOE/EM) Applicability of the HMTA to GOCO and GOGO Transportation
1991 J. Kaleta to S. Denny (DOE/EM) Definition of "Public Highway" and Jurisdiction of HMTUSA over Roads on DOE Sites
1992 J. Kaleta to M. Malsch (NRC) Applicability of the HMR and NRC Regulations to DOE Contractors
1993 E. Bonekemper to J. Williams (DOE-GC) Applicability of the HMTA to LANL
1996 J. S. Hedgepeth to  T. Needels (DOE/EM) DOT Special Permit Party-to-Status for DOE Contractors
1997 E. Mazzullo to D. Stancell (DOE-OR) Applicability of the HMR to GOGO Operations
1997 E. Bonekemper to R. Bell (OR Contractor) Applicability of the HMTA to Roads on DOE Sites
2003 E. Mazzullo to S. Wisness (DOE-RL) Applicability of the HMR to Security Personnel at Richland
2003  H. Mitchell to J. Johnston (LANL) Clarification on who may apply the packaging marking identified in § 178.350 for DOT Specification 7A Packaging 
2005 H. Mitchell to D. Ashworth (DOE/EM) Clarification of specification packaging marking requirements under the HMR
2006 J. Gale to J. Lowery (ALO Contractor) Applicability of the HMR to LANL
2006 J. Gale to R. Porter Clarification of shipping a Type A quantity of non-fissile radioactive material in a Type B package
2008 H. Mitchell to E. McNeil (DOE/EM) Clarification of Training Requirements Pertaining to Special Permits (HMR 49 CFR Parts 171-180)
2008 E. Mazzullo to E. McNeil (DOE/EM) Clarification of the Use of Freight Containers Designed, Tested and Fabricated to ISO 1496-1
2008 C. Betts to J. Shuler (DOE/EM) Clarification of Competent Authority Approvals USA/0696/S-96 and USA/0695/S-96
2009 C. Betts to J. Portsmouth (RL Contractor) Clarification of Marking Requirements for Industrial Packagings and DOT Specification 7A Packagings
2014 J. Solomey to G. French Interpretation Regarding Our Road Closure Process for Taking Shipments Out of Commerce at Hanford
2014 T. Foster to M. Hawk Interpretation Regarding Drop Tests for Fissile Materials in DOT 7A Type A Packaging
2015 T. Foster to M. Hawk Interpretation Concerning Use of a Package Mass Less Than the Qualified Mass of the Package
2015  D. Pfund to D. Claussen  Interpretation of Exclusive Use Consignments  
2017 T. Foster to M. Hawk Interpretation Concerning Proper Shipping Name based of Packaging Type or Material being shipped
2018 D. Kinderen to J. Schlueter Interpretation Clarification of The Hazardous Materials Regulations Applicable to Non-radioactive Solid Objects with Surface Radioactive Contamination


Interpretations from DOT's FWHA and FMCSA and State DOT
Year of
 Reference Letter  Issue Addressed
 FHWA = Federal Highway Administration
 FMCSA = Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration
 HMR = Hazardous Materials Regulations
 CMV = Commercial Motor Vehicle
1991 J. Scapellato to D. Stancell (DOE-OR) Applicability of the FMCSR to DOE Contractors Operating CMVs
1992 S. Reeder to R. Miskelley (DOE-OR) Applicability of the Kentucky Motor Vehicle Safety Regulations to DOE Contractor Operations in Kentucky
1993 J. Moran to M. Miskelley (DOE-OR) Applicability of the Tennessee State Regulstions to DOE Vehicles Managed and Operations an Independent Contractor in the Oak Ridge Area
1994 P. Brennan to M. Maline (DOE/EM) Applicability of the HMR to Operations at Hanford
1997 P. Brennan to M. Williams (PNNL Contractor) Applicability of the FMCSR to Contractor Operations at PNNL
2000 C. MacGowen to D. Stancell (DOE-OR) Applicability of the FMCSR to Generator Trailers
2004 A. Sandberg to E. McNeil (DOE/EM) Applicability of the FMCSR to DOE Emergency Response Teams
2015 L. Minor to C. Gelles (DOE/EM) Applicability of the FMCSA Response to Hours-of-Service Exemption for The US DOE


Updated October 20, 2023

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