On many occasions, emergency personnel e.g. coast guard, or other workers may need access to various ports and vessels without going through custom, security and screening. Therefore, it was necessary to enact Maritime Transportation Security Act.
Under this act, number of stipulations about vessel and port security and safety was created. Certain protocols were established for these workers for unescorted access to all those ports and vessels.
TWIC card is the way to access and, in this post, we will tell you how to get a TWIC card.
What is TWIC card?
Transportation Worker Identification Credential which is known as TWIC card will provide important personnel the necessary clearance for moving around without wasting their valuable time in going through all extra security drill.
People who work on ships are not only those who will need TWIC card. As per the data available there are around two million active workers who are enrolled in TWIC card program.
Few others who may need TWIC card include contractors, truckers, maintenance personnel or anyone who need unescorted access to various ports and vessels regulated by MTSA.
TWIC card will be tamper-resistant, which contains an IC chip that contains the entire biometric information of the card holder e.g. fingerprints, and contains a magnetic strip which is similar to credit card.
It is almost impossible to forge this TWIC card, and there will be many steps that the person applying for this card has to complete before they are granted one.
How can you obtain TWIC card?
Following are the eligibility criteria for obtaining TWIC card:
- You have to be U.S. citizen. Person must either be legally permanent resident or non-immigrant alien who has legal status.
- Person must also have access to all MTSA regulated facilities.
- Applicant will undergo background check and must have no criminal background.
- Applicant must not pose any kind of threat to transportation or national security
- Person should never indulge directly or indirectly in terrorism.
Applicant have to apply either online or by submitting application in person at the application center, located all throughout the country.
You also have to submit all the necessary documents as follows:
- Your valid ID which can be driver’s license or military ID
- Your birth day certificate.
- Completed application
You must apply for TWIC card minimum 8 to 12 weeks before you actually need it. After you submit your application, usually it takes 4 to 6 weeks for the authority to verify all your details.
All the applicant will undergo background check and therefore no vital information should be concealed or withheld about oneself. Every detail about social security number, place and date of birth, all residential addresses during last 5 years etc.
All the domestic as well as international government databases will be searched for confirming your identity for determining whether you really pose any kind of threat to transportation or national security.
It will also determine if you have any kind of outstanding dues or warrants, or whether you are deportable alien.
If everything goes well then TSA will submit their final determination which include:
- No Security Threat or
Any threat assessment – where you can appeal against it within the period of 60 days.