Restricted Areas outside of the Secure Area are those areas that are deemed essential to the security of your maritime facility and require some level of protection, be it a physical barrier (such as gates and/or fencing), and/or monitoring by security guards, lighting, cameras and/or an intrusion detection system(s).

Common examples of Restricted Areas outside a Secure Area include the FSO’s office with SSI, guard posts outside the fence line, or off-site computer server rooms(s), electrical sub-station(s) that power the facility, and other critical utility feeds such as a water supply value.

However, according to 33CFR105.200 (b)(7) – the facility owner or operator must ensure that restricted areas are controlled and TWIC provisions are coordinated, if applied to such restricted areas. [emphasis added]

INTERPRETATION:  This tells us that if a portion of your Secure Area is also a Restricted Area,  e.g. a Secure/Restricted Area, TWIC provisions must be coordinated. 

Join us this month while we review these regulatory definitions and how they apply to your facility.  Suggested Reading - National Maritime Security Initiatives , 33 CFR 101.105 and 33 CFR 105.200.

Last week we reviewed the regulatory definitions of Secure Areas and Restricted Areas.  Now let’s look at guidance provided by the Coast Guard.  NVIC 03-07 GUIDANCE FOR THE IMPLEMENTATION OF THE TRANSPORTATION WORKER IDENTIFICATION CREDENTIAL (TWIC) PROGRAM IN THE MARITIME SECTOR issued July 2, 2007 provides additional information regarding these designations in Paragraph 5; which states:

  • The term “secure area” is defined as “the area over which the owner/operator has implemented security measures for access control in accordance with their security plan.” The terms “secure area” and “restricted area” have different definitions and purposes. Regulations at 33 CFR 101.105 define restricted area as “a location requiring a higher degree of security protection” which is used in a number of regulatory requirements. A secure area covers a broader space encompassing restricted areas and includes everything within an access control boundary, as defined in existing security plans. For facilities, the secure area encompasses the entire facility footprint as described in their currently approved facility security plan, with the exception of public access areas and those facilities with significant non-maritime transportation portions who submit an amendment to redefine their secure area. All of these provisions are explained in Enclosure (3) (section 3.3 b) [which follows].
  • 3.3 b Secure Areas

(1) A key element of the TWIC Program is the definition of the secure area. A secure area is defined as “the area over which an owner/operator has implemented security measures for access control.”  For facilities, the secure area is the entire area within the outer-most access control perimeter of a facility, with the exception of public access areas, and encompasses all restricted areas, with the exception of paragraph 3.3 b (3) below. The secure area is bound by the fence line, gates, waterfront, and other means that provide access control to the area. The secure area is the area regulated by 33 CFR Part 105 and is encompassed by the currently approved security plan.

(2) The terms “secure area” and “restricted area” do not mean the same thing. The restricted area is already defined in 33 CFR Parts 101-106 as “the infrastructure or locations identified in a facility security assessment or by the operator that require limited access and a higher degree of security protection.” (33 CFR 101.105) Additionally, reference (a) spells out certain areas within facilities that must be included as restricted areas (see 33 CFR 105.260). Restricted areas of a facility present a heightened opportunity for a TSI. By virtue of the fact that the secure area encompasses the entire facility or vessel, restricted areas fall within this perimeter.

(3) Facilities with a significant non-maritime transportation portion may submit an amendment to their FSP to request to redefine their secure area to include only the maritime transportation portion of the facility. During this redefinition process, some restricted areas may be eligible for placement outside of the new secure area [emphasis added] depending on their type. (see discussion in section 3.4) …which states in 3.4.a. (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*
(c) Areas containing cargo consisting of dangerous goods or hazardous substances, including certain dangerous cargoes*.
*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.

This is the reason why your Seebald & Associates’ prepared FSP may use the terms Restricted Area, Secure Area, and Secure/Restricted Area.

Restricted Area, Secure Area, Secure/Restricted Area

We sometimes are asked:

“What is a Secure/Restricted Area?  That designation is not listed or referred to in the regulations.”

To address these differences, we begin this month’s Blog series with regulatory definitions and their interpretation.

33CFR101.105 DEFINITIONS:  Unless otherwise specified, as used in this subchapter:

Restricted areas mean the infrastructures or locations identified in a facility security assessment or by the operator that require limited access and a higher degree of security protection.  The entire facility may be designated the restricted area, as long as the entire facility is provided the appropriate level of security.

Secure area means the area at a facility over which the owner/operator has implemented security measures for access control in accordance with a Coast Guard approved security plan.  It does not include public access areas, as that term is defined in §§105.106 of this subchapter.  Facilities subject to part 105 of this subchapter located in the Commonwealth of the Northern Mariana Islands and American Samoa have no secure areas.  Facilities subject to part 105 of this subchapter may, with approval of the Coast Guard, designate only those portions of their facility that are directly connected to maritime transportation or are at risk of being involved in a transportation security incident as their secure areas.

Let’s review the Implementation of the National Maritime Security Initiatives Final Rule published July 1, 2003.  An important and insightful aspect of every Final Rule is the Agency’s responses to public comments.  In response to a request that TWIC requirements be promulgated quickly – the Coast Guard states:  ‘46 U.S.C. 70105, Transportation Security Cards, addresses unescorted personnel access to secure areas of facilities [emphasis added] and vessels.  Other agencies of DHS (e.g., TSA) are responsible for implementing this section of the MTSA.  Other agencies of DHS (e.g., TSA) are developing the Transportation Worker Identification Credential (TWIC) that will be a transportation system-wide common credential, used across all modes, for all U.S. transportation workers requiring unescorted physical and logical access to secure areas of our transportation system [emphasis added].  The goal is to have one standardized credential that is universally recognized and accepted across our transportation system and can be used locally within the current facility infrastructure.’

INTERPRETATION:  This tells us that to be granted unescorted access to a Secure Area one must possess a valid TWIC [and have a reason to be in the secure area].  There is no regulatory requirement to possess a valid TWIC for unescorted access to a Restricted Area.

However, according to 33CFR105.200 (b)(7) – the facility owner or operator must ensure that restricted areas are controlled and TWIC provisions are coordinated, if applied to such restricted areas. [emphasis added]

INTERPRETATION:  This tells us that if a portion of your Secure Area is also a Restricted Area,  e.g. a Secure/Restricted Area, TWIC provisions must be coordinated. 

Join us this month while we review these regulatory definitions and how they apply to your facility.  Suggested Reading - National Maritime Security Initiatives , 33 CFR 101.105 and 33 CFR 105.200.

33CFR105.415, doesn’t let us off the hook just yet.  The regulation goes on to say, “If the results of an audit require amendment of either the FSA or FSP, the FSO must submit, in accordance with § 105.410 of this subpart, the amendments to the cognizant COTP for review and approval no later than 30 days after completion of the audit and a letter certifying that the amended FSP meets the applicable requirements of this part.”  So, if an amendment is required, we need to address this promptly!

As we manage the paperwork related to the audit it is also important to be reminded that 18 USC 47 applies to all § 1001 states:  “Whoever … knowingly and willfully—

(1) falsifies, conceals, or covers up by any trick, scheme, or device a material fact;

(2) makes any materially false, fictitious, or fraudulent statement or representation; or

(3) makes or uses any false writing or document knowing the same to contain any materially false, fictitious, or fraudulent statement or entry;

shall be fined under this title, imprisoned not more than 5 years or, if the offense involves international or domestic terrorism (as defined in section 2331), imprisoned not more than 8 years, or both.”

Well, there you have it, the audit is an important part of your facility’s overall security culture!  Be conscientious and keep your personnel, your facility your community and our Country safe and secure!!!

So, we now know that we must conduct audits annually and we also know who can conduct the audit, but what does the audit include?

  • First the audit must include an extensive review of the physical site and the security systems being utilized. This is not just a quick 15 minute drive around the facility! The auditor must test your systems, look at your fence lines, gate systems, CCTV systems and all security equipment listed in your FSP.
  • Second, the auditor must test your people ensuring that they have the required security awareness understanding and that they are fully carrying out their security responsibilities.
  • Third, the auditor must also review all security records and documents to ensure that they are fully compliant.
  • After the audit is complete, the auditor should provide the FSO with an Audit letter that should be included with your Records and Documents. Additionally, the auditor should provide you with a detailed report of what they found.  This is for your information ONLY.  It is not to be provided to the Coast Guard.

A comprehensive audit might also include the conducting of a Drill and Exercise and may include Security Awareness training for your All Other personnel.  The Audit is a critical tool to improve your FSP and your personnel!