WASHINGTON – On June 5th at a meeting of the National Classification Committee (NCC) of the National Motor Freight Traffic Association (NMFTA), the committee docketed a proposal to change the classification of paint and related materials at a higher freight rate based on density. At the meeting, NPCA opposed a higher reclassification, which arose from a research report compiled by NCC that NPCA argues relied on flawed data (data on 30 tons of shipments from carrier docks) and did not adequately consider the data provided by NPCA (data on 250 million tons of shipments), which realistically characterize the primary shipments that are shipped from paint facilities.

In addition, NPCA took issue with the NCC’s discussion of stowage requirements for paint products that are regulated since the majority of the paint products that are shipped are low density and encompassed in less-than-truckload shipments that are Packing Group II or III. Additionally, NPCA stressed that carriers principally employed by the paint industry generally do not carry high explosives, toxic gases (Zones A and B), poison liquids in packing group I so that stowability compatibility is, generally speaking, much more manageable. And finally, while the research report makes a comparison between petroleum products and paint products for purposes of justifying changes in the current classification of paint, petroleum products are 100% flammable while paint products are a mixture or a blend that only contain 15-20% flammable material.

NCC will consider the proposal to reclassify paint at its October 2 meeting. NPCA members can contact Heidi McAuliffe at hmcauliffe@paint.org for more information.