Somach Simmons and Dunn, Attorneys at Law Somach Simmons & Dunn | Attorneys at Law

May 15, 2018  |  Written by Alyson E. Ackerman

Trucking Industry May Benefit from Increased Diesel Vehicle and Engine Emission Control System Warranty Periods Proposed by the California Air Resources Board

The California Air Resources Board (CARB) unveiled proposed amendments to its emission control system warranty provisions and associated maintenance provisions for heavy-duty diesel vehicles (Proposed Amendments).  The amendments apply only to on-road heavy-duty diesel vehicles with a gross vehicle weight rating greater than 14,000 pounds, meaning the effect of the Proposed Amendments will be felt most strongly by private persons and businesses in California and elsewhere who purchase and operate California certified heavy-duty vehicles.

The Proposed Amendments increase emission warranty periods for 2022 and subsequent model year Class 4 through Class 8 California certified heavy-duty diesel vehicles and engines from 100,000 miles to up to 350,000 miles, depending upon vehicle/engine class.  The emission warranty period represents the period of use (in time or mileage) that an engine is designed, built, and equipped to conform to applicable emission standards free of defects.  If a defect occurs during the warranty period, the manufacturer is responsible for fixing it.

CARB indicates the current warranty periods for heavy-duty diesel vehicles and engines are outdated because newer heavy-duty vehicles and engines, when well maintained, have longer useful operating lifetimes prior to necessitating rebuild.  CARB also cites the Proposed Amendments as critical for attaining federal health-based air quality standards for ozone and diesel particulate matter (PM2.5) in the South Coast and San Joaquin Valley air basins.  According to CARB, if implemented, the amendments would result in reduced nitrogen oxides and PM2.5 emissions by approximately 0.75 tons (1,500 pounds) and 0.008 tons (16 pounds) per day, respectively, statewide by 2030.

Interested and/or affected persons and businesses are encouraged to submit written or oral comments on the Proposed Amendments.  Written and oral comments may be submitted at the public hearing, scheduled for June 28, 2018.  Written comments not submitted at the public hearing must be received by CARB no later than June 25, 2018.  If approved, the Proposed Amendments would be presented to the United States Environmental Protection Agency for approval as a change to California’s State Implementation Plan – a state specific plan implemented to both attain and maintain National Ambient Air Quality Standards for certain (“criteria”) air pollutants.

A copy of the Notice of Public Hearing to consider the Proposed Amendments is available here.

For additional information on the Proposed Amendments and other air-related issues, please contact Alyson E. Ackerman at aackerman@somachlaw.com or 916-469-3843, or Michael E. Vergara at mvergara@somachlaw.com or 916-469-3824.

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