Testing, quality assurance and certification firm Intertek is now offering UN-compliant corrosion testing as required by a recent emergency order issued by the Department of Transportation mandating the proper classification and testing of crude oil offered for transportation in the US.
The US DOT released the emergency order in February. It requires the testing of crude oil for corrosivity to steel and aluminum. Although the method for testing was not specified in this order, the NACE TM0172 method has been widely accepted as a useful test for corrosivity determination.
In March, the DOT released an amended emergency order and clarified the corrosivity method requirement. The DOT requires that the testing of crude oil for corrosivity to steel and aluminum should be conducted according to UN section 37. The UN method determines the corrosive properties of liquids and solids that may become liquid during transport as dangerous goods of Class 8, packing group III and ensures the proper classification of hazardous materials.
Intertek’s Chicago laboratory is equipped with the specified steel and aluminum test specimens required for UN corrosion testing. Intertek uses samples of the TC-128 rail car tank alloy for performing rail-car specific alloy corrosivity testing and machines them to meet specimen requirements to ensure accurate and reliable testing.
In May the DOT released another emergency order mandating that railroads operating trains containing large amounts of Bakken crude oil notify state emergency response commissions about the operation of these trains through their states.
The emergency order follows several recent oil train crashes, the most recent being a CSX train carrying Bakken crude oil that derailed and burst into flames in Virginia in April.
A recent analysis of the data by the Washington Post found railroads spilled 800,000 gallons of crude oil between 1975 and 2012. Last year, trains spilled more than 1.15 million gallons of crude oil.