SACRAMENTO - The California Air Resources Board has fined Bakersfield-based KS Industries, an engineering and construction firm, $230,250 for failing to update its diesel trucks to clean up harmful emissions as required by state anti-pollution laws.
ARB investigators cited the company for missing two key compliance deadlines. KS Industries failed to clean up its fleet in accordance with the State Truck and Bus Regulation, retrofitting 1996 – 1999 model year heavy duty trucks with diesel particulate filters by Jan. 1, 2012, and 2000 – 2004 model year trucks by Jan. 1, 2013.
“The Air Resources Board is committed to improving air quality and educating business owners about how to comply with the regulations that were created to help achieve this goal,” said ARB Enforcement Chief Jim Ryden. “All businesses that depend on their vehicle fleets need to pay attention to the specific deadlines of the State Truck and Bus Regulation, and understand that ignoring or forgetting them can result in a hefty fine.”
Of the $230,250 owed by KS Industries, $172,688 was paid to the California Air Pollution Control Fund to fund air pollution research, while the remaining $57,562 has been paid to the San Joaquin Valley Air Pollution District to fund the School Bus Retrofit Supplemental Environmental Project.
In addition, as part of the settlement, KS Industries will also:
• Ensure that staff responsible for compliance with the diesel truck emission inspection program attend a diesel education course and provide certificates of completion within six months;
• Instruct vehicle operators to comply with the state’s idling regulations;
• Ensure that trucks have the most recent engine-operating software installed to limit the amount of NOx (NOx, or oxides of nitrogen, is a primary ingredient of smog);
• Ensure that all 1974 and newer diesel-powered vehicles are up to federal emissions standards for the vehicle model year and are properly labeled with an engine certification label.
• Become compliant with the Truck and Bus Regulation by November 15, 2013.
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.
CARB is the lead agency in California for cleaning up the air and fighting climate change to attain and maintain health-based air quality standards. Its mission is to promote and protect public health, welfare, and ecological resources through the effective reduction of air and climate pollutants while recognizing and considering effects on the economy.