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Beginning in the late 2000's, the California Air Resources Board (CARB) enacted a number of regulatory programs that affect virtually all in-use diesel-powered vehicles and equipment, including in some cases vehicles and equipment registered or based outside of California that operate in California. This suite of rules, often referred to as the CARB “fleet rules” generally force owners and operators of existing diesel vehicles and equipment to either replace older units with newer units or install retrofit emission control devices.

Although these programs have been in place for some time, many companies continue to receive notices of violation from CARB alleging that they have failed to comply with regulatory requirements. For example, a review of CARB's Enforcement Case Settlements during calendar years 2019 and 2020 (through early June) shows that the agency settled 33 alleged violations of one of more of the fleet rules with parties ranging from private persons to multinational corporations. The following is a breakdown of recent settlements for some of the fleet rules.

  • Ocean Going Vessels (At Berth) Rule: 11 settlements totaling $1,468,600 in penalties
  • Truck & Bus Rule: 13 settlements totaling $476,250 in penalties
  • Cargo Handling Equipment Rule: 4 settlements totaling $140,250 in penalties
  • Periodic Smoke Inspection Program: 3 settlements totaling $39,950 in penalties
  • Commercial Harbor Craft Rule: 2 settlements totaling $12,650 in penalties

The above settlements represent only those that were escalated to CARB's formal settlement process and Trinity estimates that there were thousands of smaller settlements that are not included in the above numbers.

Trinity Consultants has assisted numerous clients who operate diesel vehicles and equipment to comply with the various CARB fleet rules as well as in responding to CARB allegations of non-compliance and notices of violation. For more information or compliance assistance, please email or call Allan Daly at 916.273.9980, or Jim Lyons at 916.273.5138 of Trinity's Mobile Source and Fuels business unit.