Two companies settle with CARB for nearly $100,000

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Two companies have settled with the California Air Resources Board for nearly $100,000 for failure to comply with state clean truck laws, the board recently announced. ValleyCrest Companies of Calabasas settled with CARB for nearly $65,000, while Hartwick & Hand Inc. of Victorville settled for $31,125.

  • ValleyCrest neglected to properly inspect their diesel truck fleet for excess smoke emissions during 2006 and 2007, resulting in violations in the following cities: Cypress, San Diego, Pleasanton, Sacramento, Fillmore, Sunol, Farmington, Sylmar, Santa Ana, Redwood City, San Jose, Gardena, Aliso Viejo and Modesto.
  • “Fleet owners are responsible for the maintenance of their trucks, including annual smoke tests,” said CARB Chairman Mary D. Nichols. “Neglecting all or part of required maintenance can have serious impacts on a company’s profits and have a detrimental effect on air quality and public health.”

    In addition to the penalty, ValleyCrest employees responsible for compliance with the state’s truck emissions inspection laws must complete training through the California Council on Diesel Education and Technology. Emissions control labels also must be properly affixed to engines, and all applicable employees must be instructed on how to comply with California idling restrictions by February 2009. Finally, ValleyCrest is required to submit compliance records to CARB through 2012.

    As a result of the settlement, ValleyCrest will pay $48,656 to the California Air Pollution Control Fund, established to mitigate various sources of pollution through education and the advancement and use of cleaner technology. This fund uses compliance settlement fees to fund various pollution-related research projects and related programs. Further, $16,219 will go to the Peralta Community College District to fund diesel technology education programs.

  • Hartwick & Hand settled for failing to properly inspect their heavy-duty diesel trucks. “California’s public health is top priority that should not be jeopardized by uninspected trucks polluting our air,” Nichols said. “We will continue to catch and penalize violators of the state’s air quality standards.”
  • As agreed in the settlement, Hartwick and Hand’s staff responsible for compliance with periodic smoke and heavy-duty diesel vehicle inspection programs is required to attend courses at the California Council on Diesel Education and Technology. Further, all their heavy-duty commercial vehicle operators shall comply with the state’s idling regulations, supply all smoke inspection records to CARB for the next several years, and have properly labeled engines to ensure compliance with the engine emissions certification program regulations.

    A fleet audit by CARB showed that Hartwick & Hand failed to comply with mandated smoke emissions standards. CARB’s periodic smoke and heavy-duty diesel vehicle inspection programs require annual smoke opacity tests of California-based fleets. In conjunction with the roadside smoke inspection program, CARB uses these programs to ensure that all of California’s heavy-duty vehicles are properly maintained, unaltered and free from excessive smoke emissions.

    CARB will deposit $23,343.75 of the penalty into the California Air Pollution Control Fund. The additional $7,781.25 from the penalty will be directed to the Peralta Community College District.

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