Dallas to enforce five-minute idling restriction beginning April 1

| 3/21/2008

It’s almost time for ozone season in Dallas, and for truckers a new five-minute idling restriction goes into effect April 1 and lasts through October.

The restriction, approved last year by the Dallas City Council, prohibits vehicles in excess of 14,000 pounds to idle more than five minutes unless the vehicle or situation meets certain criteria for exemption.

Citations for violations will be issued to the vehicles’ drivers, with the maximum fine possible being $500.

City officials separated categories for exemption into vehicle type and operation.

Exemptions for vehicle type include military, emergency vehicles, law enforcement, airport ground support, vehicles rented or leased to people not employed by the owner, and buses if idling less than 30 minutes while passengers are on board.

Exemptions related to operation include traffic conditions, power sources for mechanical operations coming from trucks’ engines, maintenance or diagnostic purposes, defrosting a windshield and climate control.

Information about the idling restriction is posted at seven truck stops in the Dallas area, according to a City Hall briefing prepared by the Office of Environmental Quality.