Shipment with Incorrect DOT Classification Discovered at Receiving Site

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Type:  Lessons Learned

Publisher:  Oak Ridge National Laboratory, Oak Ridge, TN

Published As:  Public


Topics:  Chemical Safety, Transportation and Packaging, Material Handling/Storage

On May 17, 2013, four 50 micro liter vials of aqueous Uranyl Nitrate hexahydrate were shipped from Oak Ridge National Laboratory to an external DOE laboratory. The shipment was identified by ORNL transportation specialists as an exempt quantity of radioactive material. On May 21, 2013, the receiving laboratory notified ORNL management that their calculations indicated the shipment should have been classified as a limited quantity of radioactive material.

Lessons Learned: For some regulatory considerations, very specific information is required which may not be evident when completing routine forms. Department of Transportation regulations have several specific limiting values for packages which are based on lung absorption of certain radioisotopes. The requirements are specific to the precise chemical formula. If there is any uncertainty to the specific chemical form, the most restrictive requirements should be used.

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