TWIC stands for "Transportation Worker Identification Credential".
They are issued to transportation workers (truck drivers) who will require unescorted access to maritime (sea, or ocean) facilities.
The TWIC program was started to enhance security at port facilities after 9/11.
TWIC cards are issued by the Transportation Security Administration (TSA), in conjunction with the U.S. Coast Guard.
TWIC cards contain biometric information (human characteristics such as fingerprints) on a microchip, a magnetic strip, and a bar code, and require special reading devices for clearance and verification.
TWIC applicants must undergo a background check to review criminal history records and U.S. citizenship and-or residency status.
The background check uses the same criteria as that of the Hazmat endorsement check. A criminal record can keep a driver from getting a TWIC card.
Names on identification documents must match exactly the name provided on the TWIC application.
In the case of a legal name change, (i.e. marriage), applicants must provide an original or certified name change document (such as marriage certificates and divorce decrees) in addition to the required documentation.
TSA lists of acceptable documentation are 'List A', which includes items such as valid U.S. Passport, NEXUS card, or U.S. Enhanced Driver's License (EDL) or Enhanced Identification Card (EIC), and 'List B', which includes regular driver's license, military ID, birth certificate, and social security card.
For identification purposes, applicants must provide either one item from 'List A', or two items from 'List B'. At least one of the items from 'List B' must be a valid photo I.D.
Drivers born outside of the U.S., or U.S. nationals, will be required to provide proof of citizenship.
As part of the TWIC process, drivers will undergo a rigorous criminal background check. A drivers criminal history, citizenship, and terrorist watch list status will be examined.
There is a long list of offenses that could disqualify someone from getting a TWIC card, either temporarily or permanently, depending on the offense.
The criteria used for the TWIC background check are the same as for the Hazmat background check.
See Also: TSA Criminal Background Checks
If denied a TWIC by the TSA because of background check issues, some drivers may be eligible to appeal and-or apply for a waiver, and the TSA will send a letter describing how a driver should proceed..
Explosive, flammable, poisonous or otherwise potentially dangerous cargo. Large amounts of especially hazardous cargo are required to be placarded under HAZMAT regulations
OTR driving normally means you'll be hauling freight to various customers throughout your company's hauling region. It often entails being gone from home for two to three weeks at a time.
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.