1-800-441-8780

1-773-735-0700

Industrial Packaging for Critical Contents

Drum It Up! Steel Drum Industry News, Trends, and Issues

Archive for the ‘DOT/UN’ Category

Overpack Container Regulations At-A-Glance

January 5th, 2017 by Natalie Mueller

Filed under: DOT/UN, HazMat, Salvage Drum

An overpack drum is a type of protective packaging manufactured to contain non-hazardous or hazardous materials or provide outer protection for another container to prevent or mitigate damage. At its most basic definition, an overpack is simply a large container in which another smaller container can be placed. Overpacks can be made out of any material — such as Skolnik’s steel overpack drums. The Department of Transportation (DOT) regulates the movement of all hazardous materials and have specific performance standards that overpack containers must meet.

Not to be confused with Salvage Drums or Salvage Overpack Drums, Overpacks are designed to protect non-leaking containers or to be used as a combination pack.

Because they are designed to provide additional protection, they are built stronger and must meet more stringent requirements than other containers.

So what are a few of those regulations?

  • Overpack containers must always have a UN marking on them that specifies the type of hazardous materials it is certified to contain.
  • An overpack will never have a liquids rating because it is designed to hold another container — a solid. Regardless of what the inner package contains, the overpack technically contains a solid.
  • The container inside an overpack must be intact — if the container is damaged, defective or leaking you must use a salvage drum.

Salvage drums, on the other hand, are certified to hold damaged, leaking or non-compliant containers and are held to even stricter regulations than overpack drums.

These are just a high level overview of the DOT’s overpack regulations. Remember that preparing hazardous materials for shipment can be complicated, and safety and compliance are key. Reserve the task of packing your hazardous materials for someone who has the appropriate DOT hazmat shipping training.

Skolnik Industries TIH (PIH) Overpack Drums range from a 20 gallon overpack to an 85 gallon overpack drum and are certified according to UN criteria and qualify as secure outer packaging. If you have any questions about using an overpack or salvage drum, don’t hesitate to ask your Skolnik representative.

Preventing DOT Fines for Non-Compliance

December 20th, 2016 by Howard Skolnik

Filed under: DOT/UN, HazMat, Skolnik Newsletter

The US Department of Transportation, DOT, has increased its presence in the field and they will be showing up at companies that manufacture, package, transport, or use dangerous goods. In addition, DOT also visits companies with related products that are regulated. Having a plan in place to welcome the inspector into your facility can greatly affect the outcome of the visit. Knowing some inside information in preparation for this visit can help your company prepare for these inspections and appear knowledgeable and informed. As a guide to helping you be prepared, COSTHA (Conference on Safe Transportation of Hazardous Articles) offers What To Do When The DOT Hazardous Materials Inspector Calls as a handbook detailing how to be ready to receive the DOT. Written by Lawrence (Larry) Bierlein, Esg., the book is filled with pointers for consideration. Copies are available for $19.00 + shipping, from COSTHA at 703.451.4031 or at mail@costha.com. On-line copies are available free to COSTHA members.

In the case of steel drums, if purchasing a drum that meets the United Nations criteria for shipping hazardous materials, the proper closure of the drum is the final and most important part of the closure process. In fact, the US Code of Federal Regulations, Title 49, paragraph 178.2(c), requires that packaging manufacturers give current written instructions to the fillers and shippers about the proper closure procedure for their “manufacturer-specific” packaging. For example, all 55 gallon drums are not the same and Closure Instructions must be from the specific manufacturer.

It is important to note that Closure Instructions are not generic. While every SKOLNIK drum is shipped with written Closure Instructions, you can now view a video of the proper closure of the Closed Head with 2“ and ¾“ fittings, Open Head with a Bolt Ring, and the Open Head with a Quick Lever closure ring. In addition, written Closure Instructions are also available in Spanish. Check out all our Closure Instruction options here and call us if you need further clarification or would like to receive additional information for your record keeping.

How Airlines Are Enforcing the Ban on the Samsung Galaxy Note 7

November 15th, 2016 by Howard Skolnik

Filed under: DOT/UN, HazMat, Industry News, Safety, Skolnik Newsletter

Last month, the DOT banned all Samsung Galaxy Note7 phones from airplanes. The U.S. Department of Transportation (DOT), with the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) and the Pipeline and Hazardous Materials Safety Administration (PHMSA), announced an emergency order to ban all Samsung Galaxy Note7 smartphone devices from air transportation in the United States.
If you are in possession of a Galaxy Note 7, and are planning to travel by air as a passenger, this is what you need to know:

  1. If passengers attempt to travel by air with their Samsung Galaxy Note7 devices, they will be denied boarding.
  2. Passengers who attempt to evade the ban by packing their phone in checked luggage are increasing the risk of a catastrophic incident.  Anyone violating the ban may be subject to criminal prosecution in addition to fines.
  3. Passengers currently traveling with Samsung Galaxy Note7 phones should contact Samsung or their wireless carrier immediately to obtain information about how to return their phones and arrange for a refund or a replacement phone. Samsung has provided guidance for customers about refund and replacement options, as well as how to contact wireless carriers, at http://www.samsung.com/us/note7recall. Samsung is also answering customers’ questions at 1-844-365-6197.
  4. If an airline representative observes that a passenger is in possession of a Samsung Note7 device prior to boarding an aircraft, the air carrier must deny boarding to the passenger unless and until the passenger divests themselves and their carry-on and checked baggage of the Samsung Galaxy Note7 device. Passengers absolutely should not pack the phones in their checked luggage.  
  5. If a flight crew member identifies that a passenger is in possession of a Samsung Galaxy Note7 device while the aircraft is in flight, the crew member must instruct the passenger to power off the device, not use or charge the device while aboard the aircraft, protect the device from accidental activation, including disabling any features that may turn on the device, such as alarm clocks, and keep the device on their person and not in the overhead compartment, seat back pocket, nor in any carry-on baggage, for the duration of the flight.

Having recently flown, I have personally seen this ban enforced! View the full story here.

Using, and Keeping, Closure Instructions

October 25th, 2016 by Howard Skolnik

Filed under: DOT/UN, HazMat, Skolnik Newsletter

In previous Skolnik Newsletters, we have mentioned the need for drum users to follow the “Skolnik-Specific” Closure Instructions when closing a drum manufactured by Skolnik. Shippers of dangerous goods containers are required by DOT (49 CFR 178.2(c) to follow these specific instructions when preparing the completed package for shipment over public right-of-way. Closure combinations and drum designs vary from manufacturer to manufacturer and therefore, Closure Instructions are not generic. Recently, DOT has also stated that every time the drum is prepared for shipment, even if empty and going to a reconditioning or disposal facility, the closure instructions must be followed. Use proper calibrated tools when effecting closure and remember, it is the responsibility of the filler to not only follow these instructions, but also to reject a container that does not appear to be properly closed. A drum torqued at more or less than the prescribed foot pounds, a ring gap greater than or less than the specified distance, or gaskets which appear not to be properly seated onto the bead, should be rejected and returned to the manufacturer.