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Maritime Security Training Requirements

Posted on Thu, Mar 07, 2013

Vulnerability assessments may reveal that certain waterfront facilities are considered “high-risk” to security breaches and associated threats. The main goal of security assessments is to identify and limit security risks to your facility, equipment, and personnel. Being able to identify and quantify risks at waterfront facilities allows companies to establish policies and procedures that can minimize the risk and consequences of security threats, and provide increased safety.

Marine Transportation Security Act  (MTSA) requires “any structure or facility of any kind located in, on, under, or adjacent to any waters subject to the jurisdiction of the United States to conduct a vulnerability assessment and prepare and submit a security plan to the Secretary of Homeland Security based on the assessment.” This law is the U.S. equivalent of the International Ship and Port Facility Security Code (ISPS), and was fully implemented on July 1, 2004. Security plans may include, but are not limited to:

  • Passenger, vehicle, and baggage screening procedures
  • Security patrols
  • Establishing restricted areas
  • Personnel identification procedures
  • Access control measures
  • Installation of surveillance equipment.

A facility that is deemed high risk must assign a Facility Security Officer (FSO) and conduct appropriate training. According to CFR 33 part 105, Maritime Security for Facilities, companies with multiple portside locations can assign a single employee as the FSO for all sites, as long as those facilities are in the same Captain Of The Port (COTP) zone and are within 50 miles of each other. The FSO may also perform other duties within the company, but they must be able to perform the duties and responsibilities required of the FSO.

A security plan is required to describe the training, drills, and security actions of persons at the waterfront facility. These actions should deter, to the maximum extent practicable, a transportation security incident, or a substantial security threat. As per §105.210, facility personnel with security duties should be trained in the following:

  • Knowledge of current security threats and patterns
  • Recognition and detection of dangerous substances and devices
  • Recognition of characteristics and behavioral patterns of persons who are likely to threaten security
  • Techniques used to circumvent security measures
  • Crowd management and control techniques
  • Security related communications
  • Knowledge of emergency procedures and contingency plans
  • Operation of security equipment and systems
  • Testing, calibration, and maintenance of security equipment and systems
  • Inspection, control, and monitoring techniques
  • Relevant provisions of the Facility Security Plan (FSP)
  • Methods of physical screening of persons, personal effects, baggage, cargo, and vessel stores
  • The meaning and the consequential requirements of the different Maritime Security (MARSEC) Levels
  • Familiar with all relevant aspects of the TWIC program and how to carry them out

All other facility personnel, including contractors, whether part-time, full-time, temporary, or permanent, must have knowledge of, through training or equivalent job experience, in the following, as appropriate:

  • Relevant provisions of the Facility Security Plan (FSP)
  • The meaning and the consequential requirements of the different MARSEC Levels as they apply to them, including emergency procedures and contingency plans
  • Recognition and detection of dangerous substances and devices
  • Recognition of characteristics and behavioral patterns of persons who are likely to threaten security
  • Techniques used to circumvent security measures
  • Familiar with all relevant aspects of the TWIC program and how to carry them out.

The MTSA requires that facilities with a higher risk of involvement in a transportation security incident perform certain tasks in order to continue operating in the United States. Facilities must be able to present a Facility Security Assessment (FSA) Report and Facility Vulnerability and Security Measures Summary (Form CG-6025).  If these items are not included in the Facility Security plan, Coast Guard Inspectors will not approve the plan.

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Tags: Dock Operations, MTSA, Training and Exercises, Security plans

USCG Requirements and Responsibilities of Facility Security Officer

Posted on Mon, Sep 17, 2012

This summer, 22 nations, more than 40 ships and submarines, over 200 aircraft and 25,000 personnel participated in the Rim of the Pacific (RIMPAC) exercise in and around the Hawaiian Islands. The biennial exercise is designed to establish and sustain cooperative relationships to ensure the safety of sea-lanes and security on the world's oceans. This exercise emphasizes the importance of the US Coast Guard’s Maritime Transportation Security Act of 2002 (MTSA) for U.S based marine-transportation related facilities by prioritizing safety and security.

The MTSA requires marine-transportation related facility owners to be responsible for facility security. The Act requires vulnerability assessments and security plan approvals.  The marine transportation security aspects regulated by the USCG covers the entire facility, not just the transfer or “dock” area.

However, not all port located facilities are affected by the MTSA regulations. The MTSA requires that those facilities deemed “high risk” for transportation related security incidents must comply with regulations in order to continue operations. “High risk” facilities that mandate compliance with MTSA requirements are those that perform the following:

  • Handle explosives, liquefied natural or hazardous gas, or other Certain Dangerous Cargoes (CDC)
  • Transfer oil or hazardous materials
  • Handle vessels covered by Chapter XI of the International Convention for the Safety of Life at Sea (SOLAS)
  • Handle passenger vessels certified to carry more than 150 passengers (if vessels actually embark or disembark passengers there)
  • Handle cargo vessels greater than 100 gross registered tons
  • Handle barges that carry cargoes regulated by 46 CFR, chapter I, subchapter D or O, or CDCs.

A facility that is deemed high risk must assign a Facility Security Officer (FSO). According to CFR 33 part 105, maritime security for facilities, a single employee may serve as the FSO for more than one facility, as long as the facilities are in the same Captain Of The Port (COTP) zone and are within 50 miles of each other. The FSO may also perform other duties within the company, but they must be able to perform the duties and responsibilities required of the FSO. The FSO must ensure and oversee the following duties:

  • Facility Security Assessment (FSA)
  • Facility Security Plan (FSP) is developed and implemented
  • Annual audit, and if necessary, update the FSA and FSP
  • The FSP is exercised per §105.220
  • Regular security inspections
  • Security awareness and vigilance of the facility personnel
  • Adequate training to personnel performing facility security duties
  • Security incidents are recorded and reported to the owner or operator
  • Documentation of maintenance
  • Preparation and the submission of any reports
  • Any required Declarations of Security with Masters, Vessel Security Officers or their designated representatives
  • The coordination of security services in accordance with the approved FSP
  • Security equipment is properly operated, tested, calibrated, and maintained
  • The recording and reporting of attainment changes in MARSEC Levels to the owner or operator and the cognizant COTP
  • When requested, provide assistance to the Vessel Security Officers in confirming the identity of visitors and service providers seeking to board the vessel through the facility
  • Timely notification to law enforcement personnel and other emergency responders of any transportation security incident
  • The FSP submittal to the cognizant COTP for approval, as well as any plans to change the facility or facility infrastructure prior to amending the FSP
  • Facility personnel are briefed of changes in security conditions
  • Proper implementation of the Transportation Worker Identification Credential (TWIC) program, if necessary.

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Tags: USCG, MTSA, Security plans, Department of Homeland Security, Terrorism Threat Management, Chemical Industry