Mil-Std 129R Labeling

DOD Compliance Articles

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Marking Palletized Unit Loads

Palletized Unit Load - A quantity of items, packed or unpacked, arranged on a pallet in a specified manner and secured, strapped, or fastened on the pallet so that the whole palletized load is handled as a single unit. A palletized or skidded load is not considered to be a shipping container. A loaded 463L System pallet is not considered to be a palletized unit load for marking of identification information in accordance with this standard. [Table III]

The rules of palletized loads are well explained by the paragraph 5.3.2.7, below. The highlights are that the palletized containers should be marked according to exterior container rules, and the palletized load as a whole requires it's own exterior container and address label. See RFID considerations are discussed below. There are additional rules for RFID-tagging of palletized loads.

5.3.2.7. When a palletized unit load of containers or items is formed, the individual containers/items comprising the unitized load shall be marked with exterior container identification marks or unpacked item marks. Unless otherwise specified, unit loads of box-packed items shall have one or more boxes turned to present a blank surface for marking. The palletized unit load shall have the identification and address marking applied as specified herein and as shown in Figure 9. For palletized unit loads 10 cubic feet and over, additional identification marking shall be placed on the end of the load adjacent to the identification-marked side.

When a fiberboard container such as a triple-wall fiberboard box is used for unitizing a load in lieu of palletization, all required marking, including the address label, may be placed directly on the flat fiberboard surface. Unitized tires shall be stacked on pallets, sidewall to sidewall, to prevent the marking on individual tires from being seen around the circumference of the load. The gross weight for palletized/containerized unit loads shall include the weight of the pallet or container base.

Because palletized loads are often stacked two or three high when shipped or stored, the marking shall be large enough to be read from a distance. The size of the lettering (see 4.2.8) shall be proportionate to the overall size of the unitized load but shall be not less than 0.75 inch (19.1 mm) in height. A loaded 463L System pallet is not considered to be a palletized unit load for marking of identification information in accordance with this standard. A loaded 463L System pallet is documented for movement as specified in Defense Transportation Regulation, DTR 4500.9-R, Part II, Chapter 203.

a. Identification marking (see 5.1.2) shall be placed on a marking board or panel, securely attached to two adjacent sides of the palletized load, by using a label or by direct stenciling. Palletized loads with smooth, flat surfaces may have identification text marking stenciled directly on two surfaces, with the marking extending from one container to another.

b. Except for DLA Troop Support C&T items, a palletized load of containers of items having different NSNs shall be marked as a “MULTIPACK” (see 5.1.2.1.b). Palletized loads of DLA Troop Support C&T items having different NSNs shall be marked as specified in the contract or order.

c. When a palletized load is covered with stretch-wrap film, pressure-sensitive labels containing the identification and address marking may be placed on the outermost layer of wrap, on either side of the load in addition to other marking requirements. Variations are authorized based on local operations and capabilities (for example, a marking board/panel positioned on the pallet before the last layer of wrap is applied).

d. The address label(s) attached directly to a container on the pallet or to a marking board or panel shall be positioned as follows:

(1) The address label shall be placed right of center on a vertical face, allowing a minimum of 2 inches (5 cm) from all edges of the unit load.

(2) The bottom edge of the address label containing the unit load information should be within the range of 32 to 48 inches (81 to 122 cm) from the bottom of the pallet. If the loaded pallet is less than 40 inches (102 cm) in height, the label should be placed as high as possible on the pallet, but not closer than 2 inches (5 cm) to the natural top of the unit load.

e. A DoD shipment packaged in an overpack enclosure (palletized unit load) for convenience of handling during transportation is exempt from identification marking under the following conditions: the overpack enclosure is not an assorted-items pack (see 5.1.2.1), the cargo is non-hazardous, the unpacked items or containers within the overpack enclosure are marked/tagged with identification information in accordance with this standard, and the overpack enclosure is not intended for storage at destination.