Coast Guard announces change in TWIC compliance date for all Great Lakes ports

CLEVELAND – The U.S. Coast Guard announced Monday that December 1st, 2008 is the new compliance date for implementation of the Transportation Worker Identification Credential (TWIC) for owners and operators of facilities located within the U.S. Coast Guard Captain of the Port Zones of Buffalo, N.Y., Duluth, Minn., Detroit and Sault Ste. Marie, Mich., and Lake Michigan.

In accordance with the requirements of the Maritime Transportation Security Act (MTSA) and the Security and Accountability for Every Port Act (SAFE Port Act), the Transportation Worker Identification Credential (TWIC) serve as an identification card for all personnel requiring unescorted access to secure areas of MTSA regulated and facilities. To obtain a TWIC, an individual must successfully pass a security threat assessment conducted by Transportation Security Administration (TSA).

The original October 31st 2008 compliance date for these facilities was extended due to a power outage at a Transportation Security Administration facility that has delayed the activation of some TWICs. TWIC activations nationwide have been rescheduled to begin again the week of November 10th at which point workers on the Great Lakes, and at ports with compliance dates on or before December 1st, will be able to activate their TWICs. Activation for all other ports will be available nationwide later in November.

TWIC program pre-enrollment and status checks are still available nationwide and those workers requiring a TWIC are encouraged to enroll as soon as possible. The final compliance date for all licensed and documented merchant mariners and vessel operators who are required to have a TWIC remains April 15th, 2009.

Updates on TWIC activation and rescheduling can be found at www.tsa.gov/twic. Additional information and a framework showing expected compliance dates by Captain of the Port zone is available on the U.S. Coast Guard’s Homeport Web site at http://homeport.uscg.mil/twic. Captain of the Port zone maps with ports annotated are available on that Web site under General Information, COTP Zone Maps. You may also call 1-866-DHS-TWIC (1-866-347-8942) or 1-877-MTSA-AID (1-877-687-2243, Option 1) for more information.

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