B-129703, JUL. 21, 1958

B-129703: Jul 21, 1958

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TO THE ATCHISON TOPEKA AND SANTA FE RAILWAY COMPANY: WE HAVE RECEIVED YOUR SUPPLEMENTAL BILL NO. NO COVERING LETTER WAS SUBMITTED WITH YOUR SUPPLEMENTAL BILL. THE CHARGES REFLECTED THEREIN APPEAR TO BE COMPUTED ON THE BASIS OF YOUR EARLIER POSITION THAT THE SHIPMENT WAS SUBJECT TO THE APPLICATION OF RULE 18 (COMBINATION ARTICLE RULE) OF THE GOVERNING FREIGHT CLASSIFICATION. WHICH WAS DEDUCTED. OUR POSITION WAS MADE CLEAR IN OUR LETTER OF MARCH 11. ARMY INDICATED TO US THAT RULE 18 OF THE GOVERNING FREIGHT CLASSIFICATION AND THE TARIFF DESCRIPTION URGED UPON US WERE INAPPLICABLE IN CONNECTION WITH THE INSTANT SHIPMENT. THE RECORD IS REPLETE WITH DETAIL DEMONSTRATING THAT THE DISTRIBUTOR TANK COULD NOT READILY BE DETACHED FROM THE MOTOR VEHICLE WHICH SUPPORTED IT AND RENDERED THE DEVICE MOBILE.

B-129703, JUL. 21, 1958

TO THE ATCHISON TOPEKA AND SANTA FE RAILWAY COMPANY:

WE HAVE RECEIVED YOUR SUPPLEMENTAL BILL NO. SUPP 201989-B IN WHICH YOU CLAIM $230 ADDITIONAL CHARGES ALLEGEDLY DUE FOR TRANSPORTING "2 WATER DISTRIBUTORS, TRUCK MOUNTED K/D, AND COMPLETELY BOXED," FROM MINNEAPOLIS, MINNESOTA, TO WILMINGTON, CALIFORNIA, UNDER BILL OF LADING WQ 11250088, DATED APRIL 26, 1943. NO COVERING LETTER WAS SUBMITTED WITH YOUR SUPPLEMENTAL BILL, BUT THE CHARGES REFLECTED THEREIN APPEAR TO BE COMPUTED ON THE BASIS OF YOUR EARLIER POSITION THAT THE SHIPMENT WAS SUBJECT TO THE APPLICATION OF RULE 18 (COMBINATION ARTICLE RULE) OF THE GOVERNING FREIGHT CLASSIFICATION. YOU CONCLUDE, APPARENTLY, THAT THE RATE ASSESSED ON THE SHIPMENT SHOULD BE $1.40 PER 100 POUNDS, PREDICATED UPON THE PROVISIONS OF "SEC. 3 ITEM 1800" OF TRANS-CONTINENTAL FREIGHT BUREAU EXPORT TARIFF 29- F, AGENT L. E. KIPP, I.C.C. NO. 1485, GOVERNING SHIPMENTS OF "VEHICLES (SELF PROPELLING) OR PARTS THEREOF" BETWEEN THE POINTS ABOVE NAMED.

IN LETTERS TO YOU DATED NOVEMBER 29, 1951; JULY 16, 1953; NOVEMBER 30, 1954; DECEMBER 28, 1956; AND MARCH 11, 1957; WE INDICATED OUR DISAGREEMENT WITH THE RATE APPLIED BY YOU, FINDING, MOREOVER, THAT ITS APPLICATION HAD RESULTED IN AN OVERPAYMENT OF $33.61, WHICH WAS DEDUCTED, SUBSEQUENTLY, FROM AN UNPAID BILL. OUR POSITION WAS MADE CLEAR IN OUR LETTER OF MARCH 11, 1957, SUPPORTING THE AUDIT ACTION TAKEN.

AN EXAMINATION OF THE ENTIRE RECORD AND DOCUMENTATION FURNISHED BY THE U.S. ARMY INDICATED TO US THAT RULE 18 OF THE GOVERNING FREIGHT CLASSIFICATION AND THE TARIFF DESCRIPTION URGED UPON US WERE INAPPLICABLE IN CONNECTION WITH THE INSTANT SHIPMENT. THE RECORD IS REPLETE WITH DETAIL DEMONSTRATING THAT THE DISTRIBUTOR TANK COULD NOT READILY BE DETACHED FROM THE MOTOR VEHICLE WHICH SUPPORTED IT AND RENDERED THE DEVICE MOBILE. IF REMOVED, THE CONSEQUENT LOSS OF MOBILITY WOULD HAVE MADE THE TANK INCAPABLE OF FUNCTIONING AS INTENDED ORIGINALLY. MOREOVER, ASSUMING THAT THE WATER DISTRIBUTOR WERE DETACHED FROM THE CHASSIS BED, THE MOTOR VEHICLE APPARENTLY COULD NOT BE USED FOR HAULING FREIGHT UNLESS STRUCTURAL MODIFICATIONS, ECONOMICALLY PROHIBITIVE, WERE MADE TO THE CHASSIS.

AS STATED, THE RESULTS OF THESE DISCLOSURES WERE COMMUNICATED TO YOU. CONCLUDED, ACCORDINGLY, THAT THE TRUCK-MOUNTED WATER DISTRIBUTOR IS, IN FACT, A COMPLETE UNIT AND THAT NONE OF THE FUNCTIONING PARTS THEREOF WERE SUITABLE OR ADAPTABLE FOR SEPARATE USES. OUR AUDIT ACTION AND ADMINISTRATIVE DEDUCTION FROM YOUR UNPAID BILL WERE PREDICTED UPON A DETERMINATION THAT THE PROPER RATE FOR THE SHIPMENT WAS ?93 PER 100 POUNDS, IN ACCORDANCE WITH ITEM 1470 (MACHINERY NOIBN) OF TRANS- CONTINENTAL FREIGHT BUREAU, WEST BOUND EXPORT TARIFF 29-F, AGENT L. E. KIPP, I.C.C. NO. 1485. WE BASED OUR SETTLEMENT UPON THE PRINCIPLE ENUNCIATED IN AUGUST PLANTZ, INC. V. LONG ISLAND RR CO., 281 I.C.C. 172; OAKLAND TRUCK SALES CO. V. B. AND O.RR CO., 270 I.C.C. 548; AND HARRISON CONSTRUCTION CO. V. CINCINNATI N.O. AND T.RY. CO., 266 I.C.C. 313; HOLDING RULE 18 INAPPLICABLE IN INSTANCES WHERE, AS HERE, VEHICLES ARE ESPECIALLY DESIGNED AS COMPLETE UNITS AND ,STRUCTURAL CHANGES WOULD BE REQUIRED BEFORE THE TRUCK WOULD BE USEFUL FOR THE TRANSPORTATION OF FREIGHT.' SEE OAKLAND TRUCK SALES CO., SUPRA, AT 550. SEE ALSO STEWART AND STEVENSON SERVICES, INC. V. B. AND O.RY. CO., 276 I.C.C. 156, 157; 36 COMP. GEN. 405.

THESE WATER DISTRIBUTORS CONSTITUTED COMPLETE INTEGRATED MACHINES. THE TRUCK APPARENTLY WOULD BE OF NO UTILITY WITHOUT THE DISTRIBUTOR TANK, WHILE THE DISTRIBUTOR TANK, IN TURN WEIGHING SEVERAL TONS WITH A PAYLOAD, WAS USELESS IF DEPRIVED OF THE ESSENTIAL MOBILITY AFFORDED BY THE MOTOR TRUCK. NO REASON IS APPARENT, FROM THE POSTURE OF THE RECORD HERE, THAT THE CONCLUSIONS WE HAVE REACHED IN OUR EARLIER AUDIT ACTION ARE ERRONEOUS. ACCORDINGLY, ON THE BASIS OF THE PRESENT RECORD, THE AUDIT ACTION IS SUSTAINED.