I Got Your Number. Is It Still The Same?


I thought borrowing a line from the Jackson Browne song, “You Love the Thunder” would be appropriate for this blog because he’s the man and it is about chemicals in the same hazard class, but with different UN numbers. I had all of his cassettes when I was teenager. I will never forget the summer I “lived” in the back yard of a friend’s auto body repair shop in Kutztown. I had spent the first month of that summer up in Canada, on canoe trip as a steersman, with my high school, Saint John’s Cathedral Boys School in Selkirk. The trip started just south of the tar sands on the Athabasca River in Alberta and ended in Yellowknife, on Great Slave Lake in the Northwest Territories. I found out when I got back that Dad had rented my apartment while I was gone and I didn’t want to pay rent for the rest of the summer, so I camped in a small 2-man tent, using the shop’s bathroom to shower. I would back up my MG to the door of my tent each night, put the gear shift into reverse and use the back up lights to entertain or as a reading lamp, listening to Jackson Brown on the little white convertible’s cassette player. It was the best summer of my life.

Placarding bulk and non-bulk containers of materials in the same hazard class, on the same vehicle could require two separate placards, even though the materials are in the same hazard class. I learned this after I sent out my recent blog “Dangerous, Will Robinson, Dangerous” on the DOT Dangerous placard, which I wrote to answer a customer’s question on placarding mixed loads of different containers of EPA hazardous waste, which they were loading onto their trucks.

He had a bulk container, a tote of Class 8 Corrosive materials in the back of the vehicle with 6 drums of a different Corrosive material, both in the same Hazard Class, but different UN identification numbers. He knew that he had to placard because the bulk tote triggered the corrosive placard with the tote’s material’s UN number, under the placarding requirements in 172.504 and bulk marking requirements 172.302.

It was the drums that concerned him. He was over 1001 pounds aggregate gross weight of Table 2 nonbulk containers, so the non-bulk drums of the corrosive would trigger the corrosive placard without the UN Number, under 173.504(c). The question was, could he use the UN numbered corrosive placard with the bulk container’s UN number for both the bulk and non-bulk containers of corrosives.

The answer turned out to be no. The bulk and non-bulk containers of corrosives could only share the UN numbered placards if both the bulk and non-bulk containers of corrosives share the same UN number. So it seems that the shipment of bulk and non-bulk corrosives with different UN numbers requires two corrosive placards, one for the bulk container displaying the bulk container’s UN number and one without a UN Number for the Table 2 non-bulk containers of corrosives.

Some of my readers may think it is foolish of me to provide free advice to them on the hazardous material, waste, chemical and substance regulations. But I must admit it is purely selfish. In the 25 years that Hazmat Rob’s Blog I GOT YOUR NUMBER. IS IT STILL THE SAME? I have been running seminars, I have never, ever, truly understood any government regulations by just reading or discussing it. It is only when I am forced to answer a difficult question, on a specific topic, that it really allows me understand the requirements. However, the best part of this is that sometimes by answering your specific question, it will help me understand a problem that I had with that regulation that I didn’t fully understand. So don’t hesitate to call or email me your questions. It might just allow me to understand that regulation a little bit more clearly. In fact, I might use your question as an example in my seminar or to explain it to someone else when they call. You’ve got my number. Thank you for your readership and support.

Robert J. Keegan
Publisher and President
Hazardous Materials Publishing Company, Inc.
Transportation Skills Programs, Inc.


©2017 Hazardous Materials Publishing Company, Inc



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I cannot think of any company that does not generate some type of solidwaste. But, EPA is not sure that every company who generates solid waste is making an accurate determination as to whether that solid waste is ahazardous waste. All hazardous waste is solid waste. What I mean is, the hazardous waste regulations are found in 40 CFR Subchapter I of the SolidWaste Regulations under EPA, that’s why generators must keep track of their solid waste, in order to ensure their hazardous wastes are properly managed under the RCRA regulations. Currently, I believe 17 States require generators to document and track their solid wastes.


EPA requires that “hazardous waste determination for each solid waste must be made at the point of waste generation, before any dilution, mixing, or other alteration of the waste occurs, and at any time in the course of its management that it has, or may have, changed its properties as a result of exposure to the environment or other factors that may change the properties of the waste such that the RCRA classification of the waste may change.”


There are basically two ways for a person to become a hazardous waste generator, first would be by generating a listed waste, like a listed spend solvent, in 262.31, by carrying out a listed waste process in 262.32, or by discarding a listed pure chemical in 262.33 in 40 CFR Subpart D The Lists of Hazardous Waste. Then, regardless of whether the waste is listed or not, the generator would be required to see if the material meets the definition of ignitable, corrosive, reactive or toxic prescribed by the tests in 262.20, Subpart C The Characteristics of a Hazardous Waste.


EPA acknowledges that most generators use generator knowledge to make their hazardous waste determinations, which is appropriate, if accurate. In the new Hazardous Waste Generator Improvements rule; EPA states, “ In fact, generators can only use knowledge of their process and knowledge of the materials used in the production process to determine whether their waste meets any of the F-, K-, Pand U- waste listings.”



However, generators of characteristic waste have the option of either carrying out the testing in Subpart C, as prescribed, or simply using their generator knowledge of the manufacturing process, information about the product, its components, any by-products and generator testing on the material that could cause the material to be a hazardous waste.

If the available knowledge or alternative testing done by the generator, is inaccurate to making the correct determination, the person must have a representative sample of the waste tested according the Hazardous Waste Characteristics in Subpart C or an equivalent method approved by the Admistrator. But, be aware if testing is required then the material must be managed as hazardous waste, until test results are received, confirming or ruling out it’s further management as a hazardous waste.

This is not new, this is considered to be a clarification under the new rule. Regardless whether the waste is tested under Subpart C or is listed in Subpart D generators must document and maintain their hazardous waste determination records.


The hazardous waste testing documentation record keeping requirements have recently been clarified in 40 CFR 262.11 Hazardous Waste Determination And Record Keeping, for the types of information that inspectors will be asking for when testing is carried out by the generator, and which would include:

1. The chemical or physical characteristics of the wastes.

2. Information on the chemical and physical properties of the chemicals used or produced by the process or otherwise contained in the waste.

3. Results from the testing, that illustrates the properties and characteristics of the solid waste used to determine if the material is a hazardous waste.


However, when testing is not performed on a solid waste, to determine if it is a hazardous waste, generators must qualify the wastes determination by maintaining the following documentation for inspectors:

1. The chemical constituents, including feedstocks and other inputs to the production process.

2. Products, by-products, and intermediates produced by the manufacturing process.

3. Chemical or physical characteristics of the wastes.

4. The chemical and physical properties of the chemicals used or produced by the process.

5. Methods and results of any testing, other than those in Subpart C, that were used as part of a person’s knowledge to determine whether the solid waste is hazardous waste.


It should also be noted that all hazardous waste determination records must be kept for three years from the date that the waste was sent for disposal, unless the record retention requirements are automatically extended in the event of an unresolved enforcement action or requested by the EPA. This is only one of the recent clarifications in the new Hazardous Waste Generator Improvements Rule, that are contained in our new 2017/2018 Hazardous Materials Substance and Waste Compliance Guide. All of which will be covered in our in-house and regularly scheduled Hazardous Material Substance and Waste Compliance Seminars, which should be in your town soon. If you have any questions, comments or input please let us know. Thank you for your leadership and support.

Thank you for your readership and support.

Robert J Keegan
Publisher and President
The Hazardous Material Publishing Company
Transportation Skills Programs

Waste Generator Seeking Closure

The word ‘closure’ can be used for both physical and mental states. 


The “physical act” of closing something, to terminate a position, to close a door, stop operations. For example; The bar is now closed. 

The “mental state” of closure as in; attempt to get over or move on, attaining a sense of post experience contentment or finality. For example; Mother and I had finally reached closure.

I believe, that both may be attainable under the new container accumulation unit closure requirements in the Hazardous Waste Generator Improvements Rule. For many years EPA has felt that the large quantity generator (LQG), Central accumulation area closure requirements, which were previously found in the newly reserved Section 262.34, and it’s references into Part 265, were confusing and difficult to follow. Which has prompted them to clarify and consolidate the closure regulations for LQG’s closure requirements into 262.17(a)(8). The major impact being the requirement that LQG Central Accumulation Area (CAA,) accumulation units once closed, must meet the same requirements as tanks, drip pads and containment buildings.

It should not be a surprise to you, that EPA still requires notification, when a LQG closes their facility that generate hazardous waste using form 8700–12, no later than 30 days prior to closing the facility. Then, have the additional burden of re-notifying EPA on the same form within 90 days after closing that the facility has met the closure performance standards that now appear in the newly consolidated 262.17(a)(8). However, one of the two new options that now apply for the closure of your hazardous waste container accumulation units, at any time before closing the facility might.


These new requirements could require large quantity generators, who stop the storage of hazardous waste in container accumulation units, located within a LQG facility, before the facility is finally closed, meet all the requirements newly re-incorporated into 262.17(a)(8) for the clean closure of the waste accumulation unit.

However, as previously mentioned, the new rule does provide a second option. Which, allows the generator to simply enter a notice into the facility’s operating record within 30 days after closure, identifying the waste accumulation unit’s location. Personally, I prefer this second option. Which, gives the generator an exemption from the clean close requirements until, the facility is shut down. Providing the generator the opportunity to reopen the unit at a later date, and allow for the removal of the closure notice from the operating record.

It’s always been straightforward that EPA requires notification when a LQG shuts down, using form 8700–12. no later than 30 days prior to “closing the facility”. With, the additional burden of re-notifying EPA on the same form within 90 days after closing that, the facility has met the closure performance standards that now appear in the newly consolidated 262.17(a)(8). Here’s what’s new, the two new options that now apply for the “closure of your hazardous waste container accumulation units”, at any time before the facility has closed.


The clean closure standards for waste accumulation units would mandate the control, minimization, or elimination of contaminants to protect human health and the environment. To meet this goal LQG’s must insure that there will be no future escape of the hazardous waste constituents, leachate, contaminated runoff, or its decomposition by-products, into the groundwater or atmosphere. This would include any required decontamination of equipment or structures, and the removal of any remaining hazardous waste residues from waste accumulation units, containment system components, soils or subsoils.


Any hazardous waste generated during the accumulation unit closure process or closure of the generator's facility, be managed as a hazardous waste, including the proper management, 90 days storage times and the final disposal at a permitted treatment, storage and disposal facility (TSDF). Be aware, that these closure requirements for the accumulation units are considered to be one of the “conditions for your exemption” from getting a TSDF permit. So, failure to meet these requirements would not lead to a citation under the closure regulations, but, could make you liable for operation of a un-permitted TSDF, including all it’s fines and penalties.

If clean closure is not an option and contaminated soils and wastes cannot be practically removed or decontaminated, at the time of the facilities closure, the waste accumulation unit would be considered a landfill. Which, might require installing groundwater monitoring wells around the area and a post-closure groundwater monitoring program lasting up to 30 years.

As for the “Mental Closure” available in this new rule, I believe that can be attained in one of two ways as it regards to the accumulation unit closures. The first path to mental closure could be realized by performing clean closure for your waste accumulation units immediately upon their shutdown, experiencing a post clean closure contentment. Or, don’t ever start accumulating hazardous waste in a central accumulation area. Ship all your hazardous waste off site directly from a satellite accumulation area, for which the accumulation unit closure requirements do not apply. Avoiding the painful closure requirements all together. Then, by using either of these options, I believe one might attain a true sense of mental closure. Eliminating any uncomfortable future waste accumulation unit closure requirement engagements with the EPA.

If your goal is for closure in life, I cannot be much help. But, sincerely hope it is found! However, if you’re looking for it at work I might be able to help, as all of these accumulation unit closure requirements can be found in the new 2017/2018 Hazardous Materials Substances and Wastes Compliance Guide. And, of course I will be covering them extensively in the Hazardous Materials, Substances and Waste Compliance Seminar, when I come to your town, or during your in-house seminar.

Thank you for your readership and support.

Robert J Keegan
Publisher and President
The Hazardous Material Publishing Company
Transportation Skills Programs