Release 10-24
March 17, 2010

Mary Fricke

Modesto company pays $23,000 for emissions violations

SACRAMENTO – The California Air Resources Board settled with SMART Refrigerated Transport for $23,000 this month for diesel emissions violations at its Modesto, Calif. facility.

An ARB investigation showed SMART Refrigerated Transport failed to properly inspect their diesel vehicles in 2008.

"Diesel exhaust is the most common air toxic pollutant in California and is a serious hazard to public health," said ARB Enforcement Chief James Ryden. “ARB enforcement staff offer training to company employees who need current information on clean-air requirements.”

The law requires owners of California-registered truck fleets to regularly inspect their vehicles to ensure that their engine emissions meet state air quality standards.

SMART Refrigerated Transport is required to:
•    Guarantee employees responsible for conducting the inspections attend a California community college training class on diesel emissions compliance testing and provide certificates of completion within one year;
•    Provide documentation to ARB that the inspections are being carried out for the next four years;
•    Ensure all heavy-duty diesel vehicles have their software updated with the latest low-NOx (oxides of nitrogen emissions) programming;
•    Instruct vehicle operators to comply with the state's idling regulations and other applicable regulations; and,
•    Ensure all diesel truck engines are up to federal emissions standards for the vehicle model year and are properly labeled with an emission control certification label.

SMART Refrigerated Transport paid $23,000 in penalties: $17,250 went to the California Air Pollution Control Fund for projects and research to improve California's air quality. The Peralta Community College District received $5,750 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.