the maintenance of car movement records to easily determine which cars have not been moved in
the last 45 days, so their movement can be scheduled.
f. Decontamination. Activities that handle energetic materials have discovered
contamination on the floorboards of rail cars prior to and during rail car maintenance. In addition,
activities have also had serious fires in maintenance facilities because maintenance procedures
ignited energetic material that was not known by the activity to be contaminating railcars. Spills
of bulk or loose energetic material have caused this contamination during times when the long-
term dangers posed by hazardous material contamination were not fully understood and when less
emphasis was placed on prompt decontamination. As personnel retired and activities transferred
railcars among themselves, the corporate memory of past spills disappeared, but the possibility of
harmful contamination remaining has not disappeared. Contaminated railcars present threats to
personnel and the environment. The Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) is concerned about
the environmental risks associated with re-activity, ignitability, corrosivity, and toxicity; and the
Naval ordnance safety community is concerned about the explosive safety risks. Checks, which
can indicate the presence of energetic material, must be performed. Activities are directed to have
procedures that prevent injury, damage, or environmental harm resulting from maintenance being
performed on contaminated railcars.
(1) The procedures shall ensure that railcars be checked for contamination prior to
maintenance. However, railcars do not have to be checked prior to routine servicing operations in
which the operation is unlikely to involve contamination if it is present.
(2) These procedures must adhere to requirements of 40 Code of Federal Regulations
Parts 261, 262-265, 268, and 270; EPA Publication SW-846; and all applicable state and local
(3) These procedures must ensure that if testing shows that the car is contaminated
with corrosive, toxic, reactive, and/or ignitable material, then:
The railcar will be marked conspicuously to indicate that the car is
contaminated with corrosive, toxic, reactive, and/or ignitable material as
The Installation Commander will ensure that the car is decontaminated in
accordance with applicable DoD and EPA requirements.