Truck drivers who are leased on to major motor carriers would count as “small truck fleets,” enabling them to have more time to comply with California’s recently approved diesel engine in-use rule, also known as the retrofit rule.
The California Air Resources Board approved the truck and bus rule in December. The truck and bus rule, also known as the “retrofit” rule, requires all trucks and buses that operate in California to meet new diesel emissions performance standards between 2011 and 2023. By January 1, 2023, all diesel trucks must have a 2010 model year engine or newer.
On Friday, CARB confirmed to Land Line that owner-operators who own three trucks or less would count as small fleets, even if their trucks are leased to major motor carriers.
CARB announced earlier in March that it is allowing small fleets (fleets of three or fewer trucks) to keep one truck with a 2004 through 2006 engine with a particulate matter filter until Jan. 1, 2019.
Also, a one-truck operation with a 2007 or newer engine originally equipped with a particulate matter filter would not be subject to any of the retrofit rule’s requirements until 2021.
In a fact sheet, CARB stated that the truck and bus regulation includes less stringent requirements for small fleets due to the slower turnover and less financial resources that small fleets generally demonstrate compared with larger fleets.
“Almost 50 percent of the affected vehicles registered in California are owned by fleets that have three or fewer diesel vehicles,” CARB stated. “Because of the limited number of vehicles in each of these fleets, small fleets are typically not able to effectively take full advantage of flexibility options provided in the regulation.”
The increased time will also allow truck owners more chances at grants and other emissions funding through government and other sources.
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– By Charlie Morasch, staff writer