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Status:Closed    Asked:Jun 30, 2011 - 11:44 AM


What is the difference between ISTA and USDOT HazMat testing?

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!USDOT Hazmat tests apply to the packaging of Hazardous Materials (Dangerous Goods). These are different tests, with different purposes, than ISTA testing. This department of the USDOT is often referred to as UN/DOT, but it is officially the U.S. Department of Transportation Pipeline and Hazardous Materials Transportation Administration, of PHMSA.

ISTA tests are primarily used to evaluate or compare the effectiveness of packaging in protecting the product. USDOT Hazmat tests are intended to ensure that people and the environmen are protected from the product. The emphasis in USDOT Hazmat testing is on safely containing the material, not necessarily preventing damage to it. USDOT Hazmat tests have strict legal and environmental ramifications.

If you have a hazardous material (dangerous good) to package then it must meet applicable regulations, which may include those from USDOT, other nations' regulations, adn perhaps the requirements of other organizations such as the International Air Transport Association (IATA). For many materials this means a "specification" package and compliance would include very specific marking, labeling, documentation and package testing. Depending on the product, package, and distribution type, packages may have to undergo drop tests, stacking tests, vibration tests, pressure tests, and other. Tests are defined in applicable regulatory documents, such as Title 49 of the Code of Federal Regulations (49 CFR) for USDOT regulations.

There are training requirements for employees of companies that ship hazardous materials or those who supply packaging to hazmat shippers. It is very important to understand and be in complianceith all regulations concerned with hazardous materials (dangerous goods) packaging and shipping as this affects the public safety.

Source: ISTA Staff


Jun 30, 2011 - 01:08 PM

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