Release 08-33
May 7, 2008

    Dimitri Stanich
ARB fines Wilbur-Ellis Company and Piazza Trucking, Inc. $38,250 for clean air violations for heavy-duty diesel fleets

SACRAMENTO - The California Air Resources Board in April penalized Bay Area and Southern California companies for violation of clean diesel truck regulations for a total of $38,250.

Wilbur-Ellis Company, headquartered in San Francisco, and Piazza Trucking, Inc., based in South Gate, both violated California's Periodic Smoke Inspection Program, which requires owners of California-registered trucks to regularly inspect their vehicles to meet state air quality standards.

"These regulations are established to ensure California's heavy-duty vehicles are properly maintained and free from excessive smoke," said ARB Chairman Mary D. Nichols. "This penalty sends a clear message that the inspection program must be taken seriously."

A field investigation by the ARB showed that both Piazza Trucking and Wilbur-Ellis failed to properly inspect their diesel-powered vehicle fleets. To settle the case, Piazza Trucking agreed to the $33,750 penalty and Wilbur-Ellis agreed to $4,500 to comply with the Periodic Smoke Inspection Program. A sum of $9,562.50 will be paid to the Peralta Community College District to fund diesel technology education programs and training for staff that operate diesel-fueled vehicles.

Diesel exhaust contains a variety of harmful gases and over 40 other known cancer-causing substances. In 1998, California identified diesel exhaust as a toxic air contaminant based on its potential to cause cancer, premature death and other health problems. People exposed to higher levels of emissions from diesel-fueled engines are at increased risk for cancer.

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.

The energy challenge facing California is real. Every Californian needs to take immediate action to reduce energy consumption. For a list of simple ways you can reduce demand and cut your energy cost, see our web site at

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