Spotted Lanternfly Frequently Asked Questions
We get a fair number of questions about the Spotted Lanternfly permitting process. If your question isn't answered below, get in contact with us through the form on our SLF page.
Two Steps to Compliance: Train-the-Trainer and Spotted Lanternfly Driver Training
It's a two-step process to get a permit showing the driver has been trained in quarantine procedure.
Manager Takes Spotted Lanternfly Permit Training from Penn State Ag Extension
To get the permit, a fleet manager must take the “Train-the-trainer” course from the Penn State agriculture extension services. ITI cannot offer this course (we would if we could). This course allows your manager to issue permits to trained drivers in your fleet. The manager course is a free online course, and it takes two+ hours. As of Feb. 1, 2019, New Jersey, New York, and Delaware require it. As independent businesses, Owner Operators and contractors should also take the free course from Penn State.
Fleet Assigns Spotted Lanternfly Training to Drivers and Warehouse Workers
Once Step 1 is complete, your manager can assign to your drivers and workers the 10-minute Spotted Lanternfly course for drivers and warehouse workers via PRO-TREAD. The manager can then verify the training was completed in your Sentix LMS, and issue them permits.
Infographic: Train Your Employees Online
Rather Than In-Person
Which Businesses Need a Spotted Lanternfly Permit?
The Pennsylvania Agriculture Department has an excellent article answering the question: “Who needs a Spotted Lanternfly permit?”, but the short version is: Any business or group moving vehicles, equipment or goods into or out of the quarantine zones.
While only New Jersey, Pennsylvania, and Delaware currently require training, New York and New Jersey are both inspecting for the bug. The bugs have been found in large numbers from Virginia north to upstate New York, and as far west as Ohio. If you use the iMapInvasives.org website, you can see where the Spotted Lanternfly has been found and where there are infestations. New York especially uses this tool, and if you're running in those areas, expect extra scrutiny.
A quarantine means that vehicles and trailers will be inspected and logged, and if bugs are found, put out of service, denied access, or substantially delayed while the vehicle and trailer are thoroughly inspected and decontaminated. Pennsylvania's fines range from $300 to $20,000, and anywhere from a civil to a criminal violation.
To keep the flow of goods running and your fleet from delays, agriculture officials recommend all drivers and warehouse workers who are moving goods on the east coast take the training to know what to look for.
I'm a Fleet Manager: Can I Take Your Course Instead of the Penn State Course?
No. As a fleet manager, you have to take the free, two-hour Penn State Course and then teach all your existing employees (as well as all new employees). Rather than teaching all the employees, you can simply assign the ITI Spotted Lanternfly course. Once completed, you've fulfilled that obligation to teach them and you can issue the permit.
Read more about how ITI's course fits with the Penn State course.
I'm an Owner-Operator: Can I Take the PRO-TREAD Course for Spotted Lanternfly?
As an independent business, you likely don't have a client fleet that assigns you training. If you do, and you they can assign you the PRO-TREAD course on Spotted Lanternfly, great! (That said, training is one of the issues that can trigger IRS audits about independent contractors so this seems unlikely.)
More likely, you will need to take the free PSU course to get your own permit. In doing so, you'll be listed on the Pennsylvania Dept. of Agriculture's list of trucking companies in compliance with the training requirement.
What If Our Vehicles Are Just Passing Through the Area?
If your vehicles pass through the area with no stops other than normal traffic, then your business probably won’t need the permit. But if you’re stopping, loading, or unloading, you almost certainly will. Even if you're only stopping for fuel or rest, you should take the training — the bugs hitchhike on vehicles.
If you have questions, you should contact the Agriculture Departments from Pennsylvania, New Jersey or Delaware. See the state-level info below.
Our Fleet Doesn't Haul Plants or Food — Do We Still Have to Take the Training?
If your vehicles are in and out of the quarantine areas or in counties where the insect has been found, making stops to drop or pick up loads, or even to fuel up, then yes.
The Spotted Lanternfly will hitch a ride on trucks, in trailers, and even on your drivers. They will lay eggs wherever they can. It's your duty to help prevent the spread of this invasive pest.
Is the Spotted Lanternfly Threat Confined to Pennsylvania, New Jersey and Delaware?
The threat is spreading. In Dec. 2018, a second established population was declared in Winchester, VA. Three months later, Delaware declared a quarantine in several zipcodes. Other states — specifically New York — will expect you to've taken training and inspected your vehicles if you're bringing a load from any impacted areas.
Additionally, there have been some sightings of the Spotted Lanternfly in New York, Maryland, Ohio, and Connecticut. These states and others on their border (like Michigan) are monitoring the encroachment of the Spotted Lanternfly into their borders. If you have goods or vehicles coming from any of those areas, expect extra scrutiny during roadside inspections.
Currently, only Pennsylvania, New Jersey and Delaware have mandated training for trucking operations. In discussions with agricultural officials, ITI expects further training mandates and more quarantine areas from other states.
By what date do we need to complete training?
Short version: today. New York is inspecting vehicles today. Pennsylvania ramped up an enforcement team just for the Spotted Lanternfly. New Jersey and Delaware are following suit. Bugs start hatching around May 1, and you do NOT want to be the company responsible for spreading the infestation.
Where Can I Get More Information about the Spotted Lanternfly Crisis?
To help prevent the spread of the Spotted Lanternfly, the following states have set-up informational websites, email, and phone numbers to help inform the public and to provide the public with the means to report Spotted Lanternfly sightings. ITI will also keep training up-to-date as new regulations and quarantines are added, or until the mandatory Spotted Lanternfly training is lifted.
USDA Invasive Species website:
Pennsylvania: Penn State has the most comprehensive amount of information about both the Spotted Lanternfly and the permits needed. If you are outside of the quarantine area, report any sightings to the Pennsylvania State University Extension at extension.psu.edu/spotted-lanternfly or call 1-888-4-BADFLY (1-888-422-3359).
Phone: 1-833-223-2840 (BADBUG0)
Delaware (Now a Quarantine state: Feb. 28, 2019)
Delaware instituted a quarantine for several zipcodes in early 2019. For businesses, that means obtaining a permit. Luckily, that permit is the same as the Pennsylvania permit.
Phone: (302) 698-4586
Phone: (410) 841-5920