Regulatory Information

Portable consumer fuel containers are a familiar fixture in American lives – from the nostalgic metal jerry cans to the now standard red gasoline cans, along with the yellow and blue plastic diesel and kerosene cans. These portable consumer fuel containers are vital to safely transport these fuels and every year portable consumer fuel containers are used safely billions of times. These products also play a critical and irreplaceable role in disaster response and recovery.

The Industry receives oversight from a variety of sources. Portable consumer fuel containers are expected to meet statutes, EPA regulations, and ASTM International (ASTM) standards. The industry is regulated by the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) and the California Air Resources Board (CARB) and the products of the portable consumer fuel container industry are overseen by the Consumer Product Safety Commission (CPSC). The CPSC works with various industries to develop rules or standards the industry must meet. There is also a subcommittee of ASTM International (ASTM) specifically for portable consumer fuel containers. This subcommittee works to create voluntary product standards for the industry. The subcommittee for portable consumer fuel containers includes representatives of the industry, consumer safety experts, and plaintiffs’ experts. Representatives from the CPSC also sit on the subcommittee.

The portable consumer fuel containers manufactured by members of the PFCMA meet all applicable regulations. But as the industry is committed to ensuring it is always using safe and appropriate technology, it is continuing to review new designs in conjunction with ASTM. The industry’s goal is to provide consumers with the safest functioning method to transport gasoline.

Over the years, numerous safety and environmental features have been voluntarily added to the containers, most significantly, child-resistant closures and environmental improvements that do not allow vapors to escape. The industry was actively involved in each of these changes. As done in the past, should a new safety standard or rule be promulgated, the industry will embrace it.

Key components of current regulations include:

  • Any spout, or other venting mechanism, if any, must be designed to close automatically when not in use. This means, for example, that when a spout is not engaged for pouring it must automatically return to a closed position.
  • A permeation resistant container to reduce hydrocarbon emissions to the acceptable .3 grams/ gallon/day.
  • Child resistant features as outlined by the Children's Gasoline Burn Prevention Act.

At this time, all portable consumer fuel containers manufactured by the members of the PFCMA meet the required standards for safety.

For more information on industry regulations and safety standards, click here.