May 5, the Transportation Safety Administration and the Federal
Motor Carrier Safety Administration published rules state agencies
must follow to permit drivers to retain a hazmat endorsement on
Sept. 2, 2003, drivers qualified to hold hazmat-endorsed CDLs must
meet the following standards: be a U.S. citizen or lawful permanent
resident; have no disqualifying criminal offenses; not be mentally
incompetent or committed to a mental institution; and not be assessed
by TSA as posing a threat of terrorism, to national security or
to transportation security.
those lines, TSA is currently performing name-based background checks
on all hazmat-endorsed CDL holders. That means TSA is getting names
of all drivers who hold hazmat-endorsed CDLs from state motor vehicle
departments. Drivers don’t have to do anything in order for this
if TSA says a driver failed to meet the criteria for retention of
the endorsement, the driver will have to appeal or ask for a waiver.
TSA will tell drivers how to appeal or ask for a waiver as part
of a mailed notice. If TSA doesn’t grant an appeal or waiver, the
local motor vehicle department will be notified to withdraw the
Nov. 3, 2003, TSA will require fingerprint-based background checks
for drivers renewing CDLs with hazmat endorsements and for drivers
seeking to get a hazmat endorsement.
TSA and FMCSA are currently considering extending the deadline.
TSA is asking states to give drivers a 120-day notice before their
current endorsement expires. Those whose endorsements expire soon
after Nov. 3 should continue to check with local DMV or with Land
Line’s Web site to see what “sunset” provisions apply.