U.S. Code of Federal Regulations
Regulations most recently checked for updates: May 28, 2020
(a) Each cargo tank must be equipped to relieve pressure and vacuum conditions in conformance with this section and the applicable individual specification. The pressure and vacuum relief system must be designed to operate and have sufficient capacity to prevent cargo tank rupture or collapse due to over-pressurization or vacuum resulting from loading, unloading, or from heating and cooling of lading. Pressure relief systems are not required to conform to the ASME Code.
(b) Type and construction of relief systems and devices. (1) Each cargo tank must be provided with a primary pressure relief system consisting of one or more reclosing pressure relief valves. A secondary pressure relief system consisting of another pressure relief valve in parallel with the primary pressure relief system may be used to augment the total venting capacity of the cargo tank. Non-reclosing pressure relief devices are not authorized in any cargo tank except when in series with a reclosing pressure relief device. Gravity actuated reclosing valves are not authorized on any cargo tank.
(2) When provided by § 173.33(c)(1)(iii) of this subchapter, cargo tanks may be equipped with a normal vent. Such vents must be set to open at not less than 1 psig and must be designed to prevent loss of lading through the device in case of vehicle overturn.
(3) Each pressure relief system must be designed to withstand dynamic pressure surges in excess of the design set pressure as specified in paragraphs (b)(3) (i) and (ii) of this section. Set pressure is a function of MAWP as set forth in paragraph (d) of this section.
(i) Each pressure relief device must be able to withstand dynamic pressure surge reaching 30 psig above the design set pressure and sustained above the set pressure for at least 60 milliseconds with a total volume of liquid released not exceeding one gallon before the relief device recloses to a leak-tight condition. This requirement must be met regardless of vehicle orientation. This capability must be demonstrated by testing. An acceptable method is outlined in TTMA RP No. 81-97 “Performance of Spring Loaded Pressure Relief Valves on MC 306, MC 307, MC 312, DOT 406, DOT 407, and DOT 412 Tanks” (incorporated by reference; see § 171.7 of this subchapter).
(ii) After August 31, 1995, each pressure relief device must be able to withstand a dynamic pressure surge reaching 30 psig above the design set pressure and sustained above the design set pressure for at least 60 milliseconds with a total volume of liquid released not exceeding 1 L before the relief valve recloses to a leak-tight condition. This requirement must be met regardless of vehicle orientation. This capability must be demonstrated by testing. TTMA RP No. 81, cited in paragraph (b)(3)(i) of this section, is an acceptable test procedure.
(4) Each reclosing pressure relief valve must be constructed and installed in such a manner as to prevent unauthorized adjustment of the relief valve setting.
(5) No shut-off valve or other device that could prevent venting through the pressure relief system may be installed in a pressure relief system.
(6) The pressure relief system must be mounted, shielded and drainable so as to minimize the accumulation of material that could impair the operation or discharge capability of the system by freezing, corrosion or blockage.
(c) Location of relief devices. Each pressure relief device must communicate with the vapor space above the lading as near as practicable to the center of the vapor space. For example, on a cargo tank designed to operate in a level attitude, the device should be positioned at the horizontal and transverse center of the cargo tank; on cargo tanks sloped to the rear, the device should be located in the forward half of the cargo tank. The discharge from any device must be unrestricted. Protective devices which deflect the flow of vapor are permissible provided the required vent capacity is maintained.
(d) Settings of pressure relief system. The set pressure of the pressure relief system is the pressure at which it starts to open, allowing discharge.
(1) Primary pressure relief system. The set pressure of each primary relief valve must be no less than 120 percent of the MAWP, and no more than 132 percent of the MAWP. The valve must reclose at not less than 108 percent of the MAWP and remain closed at lower pressures.
(2) Secondary pressure relief system. The set pressure of each pressure relief valve used as a secondary relief device must be not less than 120 percent of the MAWP.
(e) Venting capacity of pressure relief systems. The pressure relief system (primary and secondary, including piping) must have sufficient venting capacity to limit the cargo tank internal pressure to not more than the cargo tank test pressure. The total venting capacity, rated at not more than the cargo tank test pressure, must be at least that specified in table I, except as provided in § 178.348-4.
Table I - Minimum Emergency Vent Capacity
[In cubic feet free air/hour at 60 °F and 1 atm.]
|Exposed area in square feet||Cubic feet free air per hour|
(1) Primary pressure relief system. Unless otherwise specified in the applicable individual specification, the primary relief system must have a minimum venting capacity of 12,000 SCFH per 350 square feet of exposed cargo tank area, but in any case at least one fourth the required total venting capacity for the cargo tank.
(2) Secondary pressure relief system. If the primary pressure relief system does not provide the required total venting capacity, additional capacity must be provided by a secondary pressure relief system.
(f) Certification of pressure relief devices. The manufacturer of any pressure relief device, including valves, frangible (rupture) disks, vacuum vents and combination devices must certify that the device model was designed and tested in accordance with this section and the appropriate cargo tank specification. The certificate must contain sufficient information to describe the device and its performance. The certificate must be signed by a responsible official of the manufacturer who approved the flow capacity certification.
(g) Rated flow capacity certification test. Each pressure relief device model must be successfully flow capacity certification tested prior to first use. Devices having one design, size and set pressure are considered to be one model. The testing requirements are as follows:
(1) At least 3 devices of each specific model must be tested for flow capacity at a pressure not greater than the test pressure of the cargo tank. For a device model to be certified, the capacities of the devices tested must fall within a range of plus or minus 5 percent of the average for the devices tested.
(2) The rated flow capacity of a device model may not be greater than 90 percent of the average value for the devices tested.
(3) The rated flow capacity derived for each device model must be certified by a responsible official of the device manufacturer.
(h) Marking of pressure relief devices. Each pressure relief device must be permanently marked with the following:
(1) Manufacturer's name;
(2) Model number;
(3) Set pressure, in psig; and
(4) Rated flow capacity, in SCFH at the rating pressure, in psig.