HAZMAT Endorsement And TWIC Card

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Eric P.'s Comment
member avatar

So I'm looking into getting both a Hazmat endorsement and a TWIC Card however, I'm not real sure where to start.

Do I need to apply on the TSA's website, then get my fingerprints and finally take the test at the BMV? Who do I end up paying the $86.50 fee to?

As for the TWIC Card is that a whole seperate fingerprinting or can it be done at the same time as the HAZMAT?

HAZMAT:

Hazardous Materials

Explosive, flammable, poisonous or otherwise potentially dangerous cargo. Large amounts of especially hazardous cargo are required to be placarded under HAZMAT regulations

Bmv:

Department of Motor Vehicles, Bureau of Motor Vehicles

The state agency that handles everything related to your driver's licences, including testing, issuance, transfers, and revocation.

TWIC:

Transportation Worker Identification Credential

Truck drivers who regularly pick up from or deliver to the shipping ports will often be required to carry a TWIC card.

Your TWIC is a tamper-resistant biometric card which acts as both your identification in secure areas, as well as an indicator of you having passed the necessary security clearance. TWIC cards are valid for five years. The issuance of TWIC cards is overseen by the Transportation Security Administration and the Department of Homeland Security.

Chief's Comment
member avatar

Even though the background for each is conducted through the same agency it is two separate processes. The hazmat endorsement is done through your driver licensing office. You need to check with them for the exact procedure for your state since it can be different from state to state. The basic steps though, are to pass the written test, have your fingerprints taken and they send off for the background check. When it comes back good you will be notified to come in and get your new license or in some states it will be mailed to you.

TWIC is done usually at a port of entry. Find the government TWIC web page and you will get all the answers to your questions plus be able to find the nearest TWIC office and also preregister.

My advice would be to get your hazmat endorsement first that way you can get the discounted price on the TWIC. It does not always work going the other way.

HAZMAT:

Hazardous Materials

Explosive, flammable, poisonous or otherwise potentially dangerous cargo. Large amounts of especially hazardous cargo are required to be placarded under HAZMAT regulations

TWIC:

Transportation Worker Identification Credential

Truck drivers who regularly pick up from or deliver to the shipping ports will often be required to carry a TWIC card.

Your TWIC is a tamper-resistant biometric card which acts as both your identification in secure areas, as well as an indicator of you having passed the necessary security clearance. TWIC cards are valid for five years. The issuance of TWIC cards is overseen by the Transportation Security Administration and the Department of Homeland Security.

Starcar's Comment
member avatar

Great answers Chief !!!! I've fallen along the wayside when it comes to this stuff...and as is usual, its different in every state....

Hiram E.'s Comment
member avatar

I agree with Chief...Hazmat first! I have both and have used my Hazmat a lot. It opens you up to more loads which usually means more miles. There is almost always a premium for hazmat miles. I have been carrying a TWIC card from the beginning but haven't needed it yet. Check with your dispatcher/company as some will pay for your fingerprints for your Hazmat endorsement.

HAZMAT:

Hazardous Materials

Explosive, flammable, poisonous or otherwise potentially dangerous cargo. Large amounts of especially hazardous cargo are required to be placarded under HAZMAT regulations

Dispatcher:

Dispatcher, Fleet Manager, Driver Manager

The primary person a driver communicates with at his/her company. A dispatcher can play many roles, depending on the company's structure. Dispatchers may assign freight, file requests for home time, relay messages between the driver and management, inform customer service of any delays, change appointment times, and report information to the load planners.

TWIC:

Transportation Worker Identification Credential

Truck drivers who regularly pick up from or deliver to the shipping ports will often be required to carry a TWIC card.

Your TWIC is a tamper-resistant biometric card which acts as both your identification in secure areas, as well as an indicator of you having passed the necessary security clearance. TWIC cards are valid for five years. The issuance of TWIC cards is overseen by the Transportation Security Administration and the Department of Homeland Security.

Wine Taster's Comment
member avatar

Ok, I guess I am really confused now. I had asked a similar question earlier. TWIC is for ports and HME is for hazardous materials. I thought getting a TWIC card covered you. Guess I was wrong. Can someone please explain in detail how someone that is just getting ready to go to school gets the process started? I know it is slightly different from state to state. From what I have gathered here in NC, they will not let me test hazmat until I have had a background check. Someone on the phone told me, test for your CDL A learners permit and the endorsements you want except hazmat. They said after the test and getting the learners, go get the TWIC and HME stuff done. Then come back and test hazmat. It sounded strange when I was told that but I figured they knew better than me. Now I am so confused! Please, if anybody can, do a step by step list of what needs to be done to get your CDL A learner's permit and all associated endorsements. Thanks for the help!

CDL:

Commercial Driver's License (CDL)

A CDL is required to drive any of the following vehicles:

  • Any combination of vehicles with a gross combined weight rating (GCWR) of 26,001 or more pounds, providing the gross vehicle weight rating (GVWR) of the vehicle being towed is in excess of 10,000 pounds.
  • Any single vehicle with a GVWR of 26,001 or more pounds, or any such vehicle towing another not in excess of 10,000 pounds.
  • Any vehicle, regardless of size, designed to transport 16 or more persons, including the driver.
  • Any vehicle required by federal regulations to be placarded while transporting hazardous materials.

HAZMAT:

Hazardous Materials

Explosive, flammable, poisonous or otherwise potentially dangerous cargo. Large amounts of especially hazardous cargo are required to be placarded under HAZMAT regulations

TWIC:

Transportation Worker Identification Credential

Truck drivers who regularly pick up from or deliver to the shipping ports will often be required to carry a TWIC card.

Your TWIC is a tamper-resistant biometric card which acts as both your identification in secure areas, as well as an indicator of you having passed the necessary security clearance. TWIC cards are valid for five years. The issuance of TWIC cards is overseen by the Transportation Security Administration and the Department of Homeland Security.

Wine Taster's Comment
member avatar

OK, with some more searching I found this: (It was on a truckersreport.com forum! There are some good guys over there too!)

How to get your HAZMAT Endorsement!

OK, obviously I'm FAR from the most experienced driver on here but this is something that would have helped me a long time ago.

Neither of the Truck Driving Schools I went to nor the DMV were any help in figuring out how to get the HAZMAT endorsement.

First thing you need to do is go to www.hazprints.com and fill out the Application. It cost $89.25 and it covers the cost of the background check as well as the finger prints. (You DO NOT have to be 21 to do this part of getting your HAZMAT Endorsement)

Second click the "Locations" button at the top and search for a finger printing facility in your area. (You DO NOT have to be 21 to do this part of getting your HAZMAT Endorsement)

Third go get finger printed. (They CAN NOT start the background check until you get finger printed). (You DO NOT have to be 21 to do this part of getting your HAZMAT Endorsement)

Forth Call the "Hazprints" phone number (877) 429-7746 seven days after you get finger printed to find out the status of your background check. (They say it can take up to 120 days for them to complete your application, but I filed out the application and got finger printed on September 9th 2010 and I was Cleared to go get my endorsement on September 11th 2010.)

Fifth Call your Local DMV after you get off the Phone with HazPrints to check to make sure that they have you as Clear on there system. (It can take up to 72 Hours for the DMV to get the info from HazPrints.)

Sixth Go to your DMV and take the HAZMAT test. (You DO NOT need the letter they send you saying your clear to get your HAZMAT Endorsement, the DMV has it in there computer already that your clear) (YOU MUST BE 21 TO TAKE THE HAZMAT TEST AT THE DMV)

Thats all there is to it, $89.25 + your DMV fee's!

NOW the HAZMAT TEST:

1) It is NOT hard at all. Read through the HAZMAT section of your DMV CDL Book.

2) Then go to www.cristcdl.com

3) Click the button that says "Online Testing Center" on the left side of the page

4) Scroll down a little bit and on the left side of the screen click "Haz Mat Test 1"

5) Continue going through ALL 7 HAZMAT test until you can get every question right

EVERY SINGLE QUESTION THAT WAS ON MY HAZMAT TEST AT THE DMV WAS ON THOSE PRACTICE TEST!!!!!!!

I don't know if the DMV HAZMAT test is the same in every state but here in NC it's 30 Questions and its done on the Computer. You need to get 24 right to pass, and if you get 7 wrong you Fail. I got the first 24 questions right so it stopped, so I only had to answer 24 questions!

I hope this helps my fellow new drivers out there!

American Trucker

Ok, I understand the process a little bit better now. However, there is one question that nobody seems to answer. Brett, Old School, etc. and all of you smart than me guys here have said, "blah, blah, blah! Get your hazmat endorsement before you leave for school. It will help you. Blah, blah, blah!" So here is the question:

The TSA requires you to have a permit number to start the background and fingerprint process. Will a learner's permit number work to get this process started? Does the CDL A permit you get from doing the written test qualify as a CDL A?

CDL:

Commercial Driver's License (CDL)

A CDL is required to drive any of the following vehicles:

  • Any combination of vehicles with a gross combined weight rating (GCWR) of 26,001 or more pounds, providing the gross vehicle weight rating (GVWR) of the vehicle being towed is in excess of 10,000 pounds.
  • Any single vehicle with a GVWR of 26,001 or more pounds, or any such vehicle towing another not in excess of 10,000 pounds.
  • Any vehicle, regardless of size, designed to transport 16 or more persons, including the driver.
  • Any vehicle required by federal regulations to be placarded while transporting hazardous materials.

HAZMAT:

Hazardous Materials

Explosive, flammable, poisonous or otherwise potentially dangerous cargo. Large amounts of especially hazardous cargo are required to be placarded under HAZMAT regulations

Dm:

Dispatcher, Fleet Manager, Driver Manager

The primary person a driver communicates with at his/her company. A dispatcher can play many roles, depending on the company's structure. Dispatchers may assign freight, file requests for home time, relay messages between the driver and management, inform customer service of any delays, change appointment times, and report information to the load planners.

DMV:

Department of Motor Vehicles, Bureau of Motor Vehicles

The state agency that handles everything related to your driver's licences, including testing, issuance, transfers, and revocation.

HOS:

Hours Of Service

HOS refers to the logbook hours of service regulations.
Old School's Comment
member avatar

I don't know if I can clear all this up for you or not, but here's my personal experience. Keep in mind that each state has their own way of doing this stuff.

When I took my written tests for my Class A permit I also took all my endorsement tests with the exception of the Hazmat. In Texas you can't take that test until you've passed the driving examination. So, as soon as the grumpy lady behind the counter issued me my temporary license I said I'd like to take my Hazmat test now. She said "you mean right now?" Yes mam! They let me take the exam, and if you pass they give you all the paperwork which explains where and how you go to get fingerprinted and get your background check started. In the mean time I received my new Class A license in the mail with all the endorsements on it except the Hazmat. Then when my background check cleared I received another new Class A license in the mail with all the endorsements including the Hazmat.

Brett, Old School, etc. and all of you smart than me guys here have said, "blah, blah, blah! Get your hazmat endorsement before you leave for school.

When you quote us you'd better be prepared to back up that quote with some evidence. While we strongly recommend you get your endorsements out of the way before you go to school, there is one endorsement that has to wait until you get your Class A, and that is the Hazmat endorsement. There is a considerable expense involved in getting that endorsement, and it would be foolish to waste the money when you don't even have the license yet.

The TSA requires you to have a permit number to start the background and fingerprint process.

I'm just a little confused on the question here. I assume that now you are talking about the TWIC card, or maybe you are still talking about the Hazmat endorsement. Let me answer it both ways, some states will let you go ahead and start the background check before you take the Hazmat test, if that is what you are asking then you would use your permit number. The way I did it was to go ahead and get my Hazmat background and fingerprinting after I passed the exam immediately following my driving exam. Then when you go to get your TWIC card there was small discount they would apply if you had already gotten your Hazmat because they didn't have to do the full background check because you have the Hazmat as proof that you've already cleared their federal background check.

Does the CDL A permit you get from doing the written test qualify as a CDL A?

Once again I'm not completely sure I understand what you're asking. The CDL A permit is just that, it gives you permission to drive a commercial vehicle while another CDL licensed driver is in the jump seat. It doesn't qualify as a CDL A. Depending on the various state requirements it may very well allow you to get the background and fingerprinting started though towards obtaining your Hazmat endorsement.

You could conceivably have a TWIC card and never need the Hazmat endorsement. I use my TWIC card far more than I do my Hazmat endorsement. The TWIC card merely allows you passage into the nations ports. If you don't have one, they won't let you in. I've seen truck drivers in this very scenario. What they do is have another driver with a TWIC card come hook to his load outside the gate and take it in while he waits outside to get his empty trailer back. One could also have the Hazmat endorsement and not have the TWIC card. If you are hauling hazardous materials, but not taking them to a port you don't need the TWIC card. There are a lot of tradesmen who have to have the TWIC card, not just truck drivers. If you are a welder working in a port, or maybe just a fork-lift operator you will need that TWIC card.

You also mentioned cristcdl, but did you not realize that our own High Road Training Program has an extremely helpful section in it for preparing for the Hazmat test? I flew through my exam after taking the high road to get there.

CDL:

Commercial Driver's License (CDL)

A CDL is required to drive any of the following vehicles:

  • Any combination of vehicles with a gross combined weight rating (GCWR) of 26,001 or more pounds, providing the gross vehicle weight rating (GVWR) of the vehicle being towed is in excess of 10,000 pounds.
  • Any single vehicle with a GVWR of 26,001 or more pounds, or any such vehicle towing another not in excess of 10,000 pounds.
  • Any vehicle, regardless of size, designed to transport 16 or more persons, including the driver.
  • Any vehicle required by federal regulations to be placarded while transporting hazardous materials.

HAZMAT:

Hazardous Materials

Explosive, flammable, poisonous or otherwise potentially dangerous cargo. Large amounts of especially hazardous cargo are required to be placarded under HAZMAT regulations

TWIC:

Transportation Worker Identification Credential

Truck drivers who regularly pick up from or deliver to the shipping ports will often be required to carry a TWIC card.

Your TWIC is a tamper-resistant biometric card which acts as both your identification in secure areas, as well as an indicator of you having passed the necessary security clearance. TWIC cards are valid for five years. The issuance of TWIC cards is overseen by the Transportation Security Administration and the Department of Homeland Security.

OWI:

Operating While Intoxicated

Old School's Comment
member avatar
You could conceivably have a TWIC card and never need the Hazmat endorsement. I use my TWIC card far more than I do my Hazmat endorsement. The TWIC card merely allows you passage into the nations ports. If you don't have one, they won't let you in.

Just for clarification, the TWIC card does not allow you to haul any hazardous materials. The Hazmat endorsement is what grants you that permission. Since I drive a flat-bed truck I often am delivering steel to the various ports of entry for export to other nations. The TWIC does not cover it all, nor does the Hazmat endorsement cover it all. They are two separate things and are equally useful in allowing you to be a more versatile and valuable employee.

HAZMAT:

Hazardous Materials

Explosive, flammable, poisonous or otherwise potentially dangerous cargo. Large amounts of especially hazardous cargo are required to be placarded under HAZMAT regulations

TWIC:

Transportation Worker Identification Credential

Truck drivers who regularly pick up from or deliver to the shipping ports will often be required to carry a TWIC card.

Your TWIC is a tamper-resistant biometric card which acts as both your identification in secure areas, as well as an indicator of you having passed the necessary security clearance. TWIC cards are valid for five years. The issuance of TWIC cards is overseen by the Transportation Security Administration and the Department of Homeland Security.

OWI:

Operating While Intoxicated

Wine Taster's Comment
member avatar

Thanks OS,

I did know that the highland training program covered hazmat. I was not endorsing the other one. It just happened to be in the other persons forum post from truckingreport. I just copied and pasted it.

Ok, so from what I gather, I can not get my hazmat completed until I come home from school? I can, however, start the background check and fingerprinting process so when I get home, my TWIC card will be waiting to get picked up and I can go test hazmat. Would you recommend me to pay the $126ish to start the process? Or, should I wait until I get home and make sure I pass? I am a no fail kind of person so I am pretty sure that will not happen.

HAZMAT:

Hazardous Materials

Explosive, flammable, poisonous or otherwise potentially dangerous cargo. Large amounts of especially hazardous cargo are required to be placarded under HAZMAT regulations

TWIC:

Transportation Worker Identification Credential

Truck drivers who regularly pick up from or deliver to the shipping ports will often be required to carry a TWIC card.

Your TWIC is a tamper-resistant biometric card which acts as both your identification in secure areas, as well as an indicator of you having passed the necessary security clearance. TWIC cards are valid for five years. The issuance of TWIC cards is overseen by the Transportation Security Administration and the Department of Homeland Security.

Wine Taster's Comment
member avatar

Ol, BTW this was supposed to read:

Brett, Old School, etc. and all of you SMARTER than me guys here have said, "blah, blah, blah! Get your hazmat endorsement before you leave for school.

It was meant as a compliment not slamming you guys. Yes it was a generalized quote and not meant to say tha were you guy's exact words. Sorry for the confusion.

HAZMAT:

Hazardous Materials

Explosive, flammable, poisonous or otherwise potentially dangerous cargo. Large amounts of especially hazardous cargo are required to be placarded under HAZMAT regulations

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