The California Air Resources Board said Thursday, Oct. 9, that its staff began hitting the road earlier in the week to enforce the agency’s anti-idling program, which generally limits idling to five minutes – even if the driver is resting in the sleeper. CARB staff and local air quality officials throughout the state will enforce the idling regulations by monitoring sleeper berths and commercial on- and off-road diesel vehicles where they operate.
First-time violators will receive a minimum civil penalty of $300. Subsequent penalties can be from $1,000 to $10,000. Owners, renters or lessees will be responsible for the penalty.
Regulations limiting idling of on-road commercial diesel-engine vehicles to five minutes have been in effect for several years and for sleeper-berth trucks since January of this year. The regulations addressing the idling of off-road diesel vehicles took effect in June. CARB granted a grace period to allow managers and employees to learn the new requirements.
Because of the nature of those operations, enforcement officials first will contact the operator and site supervisor for off-road vehicles to determine the reason for idling in excess of five minutes before levying the fine. If the reason is not exempted, as some clauses of the regulation allow, and the instance is a first-time violation, a $300-per-day citation will be issued to the owner, renter or lessee of the vehicle.