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newsrel -- City of Needles fined $6,000 for emissions violations

Posted: 24 Nov 2008 11:23:00
Monies to fund education classes, clean air research . Release
November 24, 2008

Karen Caesar

City of Needles fined $6,000 for emissions violations
Monies to fund education classes, clean air research

SACRAMENTO - The California Air Resources Board fined the city
of Needles $6,000 this month for diesel emissions violations that
occurred in 2006 and 2007.

ARB enforcement teams found city of Needles employees failed to
inspect their heavy-duty diesel vehicle fleet.  The law requires
annual smoke tests for diesel truck fleets and, in conjunction
with ARB’s roadside smoke inspection program, ensures that all
vehicles are properly maintained, tamper-free and free from
excessive smoke.

“The inspection program is essential to ensure that vehicles
stay clean and meet California's air quality standards,” said ARB
Chairman Mary D. Nichols. “By maintaining these standards, we can
continue to breathe healthier air in our state.”

As part of the settlement, the city is required to:

·    Guarantee employees responsible for conducting the
inspections attend a mandatory California community college class
on diesel emissions and provide certificates of completion within
one year;
·    Provide documentation to ARB that the inspections are being
carried out for the next four years;
·    Instruct vehicle operators to comply with the state’s
idling regulations;
·    Revise all heavy-duty truck engine software with the latest
Low-NOx (oxides of nitrogen emissions) programming; and,
·    Ensure that all diesel trucks are up to federal emissions
standards for the vehicle model year and are properly labeled
with an emission control label.

The city of Needles will pay $6,000 in penalties: $4,500 will go
to the California Air Pollution Control Fund, providing funding
for projects and research to improve California’s air quality. 
The Peralta Community College District will receive the remaining
$1,500 to fund emissions education classes conducted by
participating California community colleges.

Diesel exhaust contains a variety of harmful gases and over 40
other known cancer-causing compounds.  In 1998, California
identified diesel particulate matter as a toxic air contaminant
based on its potential to cause cancer, premature death, and
other health problems.

The Air Resources Board is a department of the California
Environmental Protection Agency.  ARB’s mission is to promote and
protect public health, welfare, and ecological resources through
effective reduction of air pollutants while recognizing and
considering effects on the economy.  The ARB oversees all air
pollution control efforts in California to attain and maintain
health based air quality standards.



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