Flyfisher1976 From United States of America, joined Jan 2005, 804 posts, RR: 2 Posted (8 years 4 months 5 days 13 hours ago) and read 10532 times:
I just got hired as a line mechanic working at logan Airport in Boston. I have been told by several people that getting a ramp id for this airport is very difficult due to high security levels. According to my sources it may require additional background checks and/or drug screening with a processing time of up to two weeks.
Is there any validity to this information?
Does anyone have recent experience with this process?
TheGreatChecko From United States of America, joined Mar 2004, 1136 posts, RR: 3
Reply 2, posted (8 years 4 months 5 days 13 hours ago) and read 10529 times:
Any safety sensitive position, and a line mechanic is one of those, is required to submit to a drug screening per the FAA. To get a SIDA badge anywhere it will require a background check. How extensive? I don't know.
It wouldn't surprise me if it took a little longer than usual to get through the process at Logan, but I'd attribute that more to the sheer volume of people that office probably processes in a given week.
I would think the background check, unless the Port Authority does more on their own, wouldn't be any more stringent than anywhere else in the US.
"A pilot's plane she is. She will love you if you deserve it, and try to kill you if you don't...She is the Mighty Q400"
Fr8Mech From United States of America, joined Sep 2005, 6138 posts, RR: 16
Reply 3, posted (8 years 4 months 5 days 12 hours ago) and read 10518 times:
I always thought it was up to the operator to get the safety sensitive people drug screened.
I have had my share of SIDA badges over the last few years, and the background check done by the employer is usually sufficient. SIDA classes normally require a safety/security class and a driver's class, if driving on the ramp.
But, all airports can do their own thing, so long as they comply with the minimum standards set by the TSA.
B6JFKH81 From United States of America, joined Mar 2006, 2914 posts, RR: 7
Reply 4, posted (8 years 4 months 5 days 12 hours ago) and read 10508 times:
It took the Port Authority of NY/NJ like 2 months to process my initial SIDA badge for JFK, after taking a SIDA class and Drivers Class. What a pain in the butt! I hear MassPort is not much better LOL!
So to answer your question...I see a lot of validity to your information.
"If you do not learn from history, you are doomed to repeat it"
DALMD88 From United States of America, joined Jul 2000, 2709 posts, RR: 14
Reply 6, posted (8 years 4 months 5 days 3 hours ago) and read 10390 times:
It takes longer than most airports. It took me three weeks and three seperate trips. First trip you take the trainning CBTs. The trainning is the same as most other SIDA; Drive here, not drive there, challenge everybody, yadda, yadda. At this time your company will submit your application so they can do the background check. Second trip is a visit to the airport State Police substation, Fingerprints. Third trip is to actually get the badge, but first there is a quiz to see how well you payed attention to the CBTs from three weeks ago. They ask you five or six questions from a list of twenty or so. If you get one wrong you get to come back another day and try again. If you get them right, smile for the camera and welcome to BOS. A couple of words of advise. The State Police are serious here. They don't like jokes and like to give tickets for speeding on the ramp. The metermaids that patrol the parking lots also love to give out tickets. Finnally they are very serious about wearing the reflective vests. We all have to wear them after a ramp guy was killed here a few years back.
EMBQA From United States of America, joined Oct 2003, 9364 posts, RR: 11
Reply 8, posted (8 years 4 months 4 days 17 hours ago) and read 10338 times:
Quoting DALMD88 (Reply 11): It takes longer than most airports. It took me three weeks and three seperate trips
Don't sound like it changed a whole lot since I was BOS badged in '97-'98....and what ever you do, don't loose your badge...!! Most airlines/companies at BOS make you pay the fines because they are so high at BOS.
Anyway.... Most all airports, even pre 9/11 would take about 2 weeks to get all the background search information to process you. Your company performs the search (hire an outside source) and only give the airport the information. They would perform a 10 year full background search... plus fingerprinting. As for drug testing...?? Never heard of that..?? and I've never been tested to get a badge at any of the airports I've worked.... Including BOS. I was tested when hired and required to take random testing due DOT regulations because of my job.....
[Edited 2007-03-03 15:39:13]
"It's not the size of the dog in the fight, but the size of the fight in the dog"
Srbmod From , joined Dec 1969, posts, RR:
Reply 9, posted (8 years 4 months 4 days 14 hours ago) and read 10302 times:
Quoting EMBQA (Reply 12): Anyway.... Most all airports, even pre 9/11 would take about 2 weeks to get all the background search information to process you. Your company performs the search (hire an outside source) and only give the airport the information. They would perform a 10 year full background search... plus fingerprinting. As for drug testing...?? Never heard of that..?? and I've never been tested to get a badge at any of the airports I've worked.... Including BOS. I was tested when hired and required to take random testing due DOT regulations because of my job.....
It took no more than a week (in most cases) pre-9/11 @ ATL (In some cases they even have the check done prior to the person reporting for training) in regards to an airline position. When I went through training @ ASA, the last day of training at the G.O. was spent filing out employment related paperwork, testing material for the SIDA badge, and then going to get the SIDA badge. Post 9/11, it's still about the same length of time unless you have the Airport do the fingerprint and background check for you (It took about 10 days for me to get my initial SIDA badge with the last company I worked for @ ATL.).
As for drug testing, I was under the impression that those were mandatory for anyone applying for a SIDA badge. On the other hand, how many places these days don't conduct a background check and drug test? I've seen places where the job doesn't even involve driving require a 3 year MVR.
UAL Bagsmasher From United States of America, joined Sep 1999, 2151 posts, RR: 9
Reply 11, posted (8 years 4 months 4 days 8 hours ago) and read 10243 times:
I had to fly up to BOS about 3 weeks ago for a road trip. We arrived on a charter. Before we could even look at our broke jet, we were whisked off from the FBO to a guardhouse. There our Driver's Licenses were taken by an officer to begin a lengthy criminal background check. During the check, you are required to remain in your escort vehicle outside the guardhouse. After about 45 minutes, we were issued temporary BOS badges which still required us to have a baby sitter at all times. I've been on a couple dozen field service trips all at different airports, and BOS was the most stringent by far when it came to escort procedures. They do have a no nonsense attitude up there, that's for sure. I'd rather see them overly cautious, than not giving a crap.
When we finally got to the aircraft, we were overjoyed to find out the APU was seized and was on MEL. Nothing like working in the cold dark confines of the APU compartment changing a #1 Hyd. SOV. Then the crew shows up 2 minutes after we do and begins the 'How much longer?" game. Gotta love road trips....
I think the beating they took over 9/11 and the lack of security in BOS is one of the reasons they are so stringent. I always found it to be a pain on road trips because each airport has different SIDA rules. I think if you have SIDA access at any large airport you have already had the background checks and you should be able to be issued a temporary access badge which some airports already do..But some are really out there and it becomes a hinderance if you are trying to get an airplane fixed when you have Barney Fife giving you the third degree. But in the end you have to deal with it in the post 9/11 world.