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Waste Hauler Pays $195,000 for Truck Idling in Massachusetts

Release Date: 08/13/2008
Contact Information: David Deegan, (617) 918-1017

(Boston, Mass. – Aug. 13, 2008) - Allied Waste Services of Massachusetts will pay a $195,000 penalty to settle an environmental enforcement case brought by EPA and the U.S. Department of Justice for excessive motor vehicle idling.

In 2007, an EPA inspector observed over sixty diesel-powered garbage trucks idling excessively at four Allied depots in Quincy, Fall River, Revere and Brockton.

The settlement, filed as a judicial consent decree in federal court today, is the latest of nine federal enforcement actions brought against vehicle fleet owners in New England for idling violations. Allied's settlement includes an anti-idling program with driver training, posted signs, and twice-daily management inspections of the depots' parking lots. Allied will also certify that automatic shut-off devices in its trucks are working and set to a five-minute standard.

Diesel engines emit pollutants that can cause or aggravate a variety of health conditions such as asthma, other respiratory illnesses, and heart disease. Long term exposure to diesel exhaust can also cause lung cancer. People with asthma or other respiratory/cardiac conditions, and children whose lungs are still developing, are particularly vulnerable. Three of Allied's depots were in heavily populated areas.

"Excessive vehicle idling is an entirely preventable form of air pollution,” said Robert Varney, regional administrator of EPA’s New England office. “Idling from diesel engines contributes to ozone smog and particulate pollution, increasing health risks for people who are exposed to these emissions."

This action is part of EPA's ongoing effort to reduce unnecessary engine idling. Idling wastes fuel, emits greenhouse gases and degrades air quality. EPA's enforcement effort is complemented by providing assistance to fleets and facilities to help them find alternatives to idling. Since an idling truck or bus can waste nearly a gallon of fuel per hour and incurs significantly more engine wear than driving, curbing excessive idling is a win-win situation for both fleet owners and the environment.

The Massachusetts idling regulation enforced by EPA in this case generally limits vehicle idling to no more than five minutes. Connecticut, New Hampshire and Rhode Island also have anti-idling laws.

More information:

-
Reducing diesel idling in New England (epa.gov/region1/eco/diesel)
- The Consent Decree will be posted to the
U.S. Dept. of Justice Web site: (usdoj.gov/enrd/Consent_Decrees.html)

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