What Does The TWIC Reader Final Ruling Meaning by “Handling” CDC?


As you can see by the title of this article many MTSA regulated facilities have been asking, “What do they “The USCG” mean by “Handling” CDC? Many believe that it only has to do with the maritime aspect of your facility. Well you’re wrong. On page 57681 of the TWIC Reader Final Rule you will find the following:

Several commenters requested clarification of the use of the word ‘‘handle.’’ Proposed § 105.253(a)(1) categorizes facilities that handle CDC in bulk as Risk Group A facilities, but commenters had questions about how to interpret this phrase. These commenters requested clarification on how a facility would be classified if a vessel carrying CDC in bulk were to stop at a facility, but not transfer any of the bulk CDC cargo there. After considering the comments, and to clarify risk groups, we have determined that any facility that handles or receives vessels carrying CDC in bulk will be classified as Risk Group A. While moored at a facility, a vessel must rely on the facility’s security program to adequately secure the interface between the facility and vessel and mitigate the threat of a TSI. For that reason, the facility should conduct electronic TWIC inspection to meet the security needs associated with handling or receiving vessels that carry CDC in bulk.

Discussions at public meetings prompted the Coast Guard to clarify the term ‘‘handle’’ as it related to non-maritime commerce. Specifically, the question was raised whether a facility would be classified as Risk Group A if it was used to transfer CDC in bulk through rail or other non-maritime means. In this situation, such a facility would be considered to ‘‘handle CDC in bulk’’ and would be classified as Risk Group A. This is because the bulk CDC would be on the premises of a MTSA regulated facility, and thus the facility’s access control system would need to be used to mitigate the risk of a TSI. We note that there are provisions where non-maritime activities of a facility can be located outside of the facility’s MTSA footprint. In that situation, where the bulk CDC is not a part of the maritime transportation activities, it may be that a facility could define its MTSA footprint in such a way as to exclude that area. In such a case, the TWIC reader requirements that are being implemented in this final rule would not apply in that area.

Yes, you just read that right! Even if you do not transfer CDC at your dock you still have to comply. Oh, but wait you are missing something. This is where many of my competitors fail their clients and I gladly pick up the pieces. Do you see that last paragraph? This is your key to ensuring your facility does not have to comply with the new TWIC Ruling regarding non-maritime transferred CDC. This paragraph references current provisions. What provision would that be? NVIC 03-07 the original TWIC NVIC. Here in section 3.4(a)(1-4) you will find the following verbiage:

NVIC 03-07

3.4 Facility-Specific Guidance

3.4 a. Amendment of FSPs to Designate Certain Portions of the Facility as Secure Areas for TWIC

(1) TWIC is intended to be applied to individuals who frequently access secure areas of maritime transportation vessels and facilities. Although the TWIC rule does not alter the MTSA-regulated geographic area of a facility, it does permit those facilities with a significant non-maritime transportation portion to submit for approval an amendment to their FSP to redefine their secure area to cover only the maritime transportation portion of the facility. The rest of the FSP must still cover the facility as originally submitted. The intent of this provision is to limit TWIC applicability to the maritime transportation portion, not to reduce the area over which the FSP applies.

(2) Facilities with a significant non-maritime transportation portion may apply to the COTP to redefine their secure areas for purposes of TWIC. COTPs will assess the feasibility of the request, taking into account the risk of a transportation security incident from the maritime transportation related portion. Facilities that may be considered to have a significant non-maritime transportation portion include, but are not limited to, refineries, chemical plants, factories, mills, power plants, smelting operations, and recreational boat marinas. The Coast Guard will generally not consider the following for exclusion from a secure area: commercial docks, container yards, passenger terminals, and storage areas or tank farms that are specifically used to stage cargo for loading to a vessel or to receive cargo at its first point of rest upon discharge from a vessel. ------- Key !!!

(3) Some restricted areas may be authorized to lie outside the secure area if owners/operators can demonstrate that they do not directly support or interface with the maritime transportation related portions of the facility. The Coast Guard will generally consider that the following restricted areas have a maritime transportation nexus and should always be included in the secure area:

(a) Shore areas immediately adjacent to each vessel moored at the facility

(b) Areas designated for loading, unloading or storage of cargo and stores*

*However, in some cases, tank farms or cargo storage areas directly support both maritime transportation and industrial processes (e.g. a coal pile supplied by vessel and consumed in a power plant or a tank farm storing product refined onsite intended for shipment by a vessel). In determining whether these directly support or interface with the maritime transportation portion of the facility, owners/operators should consider the following: risk of a TSI, proximity to vessels and the waterfront, and hazards of cargo. The Coast Guard expects that cargo storage areas near vessels or the waterfront will be included in the secure area, regardless of whether or not they also serve an industrial purpose.

3.4 a. (4) The redefined secure area must have sufficient access control measures such as fencing, gates, monitoring, signage etc., in order to deter and restrict unauthorized persons from gaining access to the secure area. In accordance with 33 CFR 105.310 (c), the facility owner/operator must review and validate the Facility Security Assessment (FSA), and update the FSA report to reflect the redefined secure area. Plans for how access control will be conducted for the redefined secure area must be included in the amendment to the FSP. The submission to the COTP must include the FSP amendment with the new FSA report and a justification detailing the reasons the particular portions of the facility have been included in the redefined secure area. All amendments must be submitted to the COTP no later than 60 days after the publishing date of this NVIC (September 4, 2007). Facilities that have an approved letter of intent must file an amendment with the COTP by this deadline. Facilities must receive approval for the amended plan or receive a letter from the COTP giving them permission to operate under the amended plan before implementing the amended plan.

You see if your facility has already designated portions of your facility Non Maritime Transportation Related where your CDC is stored, then you’re already ahead of the game. However, if you are listed as one of the 525 CDC facilities you will need to sit down with your local USCG Sector facilities department and explain to them why you should no longer be considered a CDC facility that falls under the new TWIC Card Reader Ruling or you can have Maritime Defense Strategy LLC do it for you. In addition, if you’re unsure if you are one of the 525 facilities, I suggest you call your local USCG Sector and they can tell you. I suggest at this moment you become proactive rather than wait until the last moment.

If you have any further questions, feel free to call Maritime Defense Strategy LLC

Joseph Powell

P.O. Box 2054

Gautier MS, 39553

Office: 228-205-0012

Cell: 352-302-1442

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