CARB Fines Two 3PLs for Non-Compliance
The California Air Resources Board (CARB) recently fined two 3PLs, Marten Logistics $100,000 and Roadrunner Transportation Systems $52,250 for “dispatching” non-compliant trucks into the State of California. Both companies are located outside of California.
The regulation in question here for Marten and Roadrunner is the CARB Truck and Bus Rule that requires a diesel fueled truck and buses with a gross vehicle weight rating greater than 14,000 pounds to retrofit exhaust filters that capture pollutants before they are emitted to the air or by replacing vehicles with newer vehicles that are originally equipped with PM filters.
The regulation does include California-based brokers, which is defined as:
California Based Broker, means a person, with operations based in California, who, for compensation, arranges or offers to arrange the transportation of property by an authorized motor carrier. A motor carrier, or person who is an employee or bona fide agent of a carrier, is not a broker when it arranges or offers to arrange the transportation of shipments which it is authorized to transport and which it has accepted and legally bound itself to transport.
TIA has been involved with all of CARBs regulations for more than 10 years, and this is the first time that this definition has (in TIA’s opinion) been misconstrued to include a non-California based broker. Based on TIA’s discussions with CARB over the past years, the California-based broker definition could include someone with a remote office or an agent in the State of California, but never intended to cover trucks being dispatched into California.
TIA staff has reached out to CARB officials for clarification on the issue and use of the definition, and is awaiting a reply. TIA will update its membership on its findings and discussions with CARB.
Background on the Regulation
On December 12, 2008, the California Air Resources Board (CARB) approved the Truck and Bus regulations to significantly reduce particulate matter (PM) and oxides of nitrogen emissions from existing diesel vehicles operating in California. The regulation took effect on January 1, 2012.
CARB felt this regulation was needed because most diesel trucks and buses last 20 years or longer and many have little or no emission controls. As a result, these vehicles emit large amounts of harmful emissions. According to CARB research, trucks and buses account for about 32 percent of the California emissions of NOx and roughly 40 percent of diesel PM emissions.
What types of vehicles are subject to the regulation?
This regulation applies to nearly all diesel fueled trucks and buses with a gross vehicle weight rating (GVWR) greater than 14,000 pounds that are privately or federally owned, including on-road and off-road agricultural yard trucks, and privately and publicly owned school buses. Other public fleets, solid waste collection trucks and transit buses are already subject to other regulations and are not part of the truck and bus regulation. Trucks that transport marine containers must comply with the drayage truck regulation.
Who must comply with the regulation?
The regulation applies to any person, business, school district, or federal government agency that owns, operates, leases or rents affected vehicles. The regulation also establishes requirements for any in-state or out-of-state motor carrier, California-based brokers, or any California resident who directs or dispatches vehicles subject to the regulation. CARB estimates that approximately 170,000 businesses in nearly all industry sectors in California, and almost a million vehicles that operate in California roads each year are affected.
What does the regulation require?
Beginning January 1, 2012, the regulation phases in requirements for heavier trucks to reduce PM emissions with exhaust retrofit filters that capture pollutants before they are emitted to the air or by replacing vehicles with newer vehicles that are originally equipped with PM filters. Starting January 1, 2015, the regulation requires accelerated replacements of both lighter and heavier vehicles that do not have PM filters installed. From 2020 to 2023 nearly all older vehicles would need to be upgraded to have exhaust emissions meeting 2010 model year engine emissions levels.
How does a broker comply?
A California-based broker who arranges the transportation of a motor carrier traveling in the State of California needs to “verify” that each hired company is either in compliance with the regulation or has reported compliance to CARB. Motor carriers that register with the CARB to use flexible compliance options must report information about all of the heavier vehicles in their fleet that operate in California and can print a certificate that confirms their reporting. California-based brokers should request this certificate from carriers to ensure compliance. Additionally, brokers can utilize the CARB truck and bus regulation online database to search for compliant carriers. If the carrier does not have a certificate, CARB recommends that brokers should obtain other documentation and a statement from the carrier that they are aware of the CARB Truck and Bus Regulation. This will demonstrate that the carrier is in compliance. *Please note that only California domiciled motor carriers are required to register with the State of California, and therefore may not be included in the database.
What are the penalties?
Any California-based broker, who fails to comply with the requirements of this regulation, will be subject to a fine of at least $1,000 per incident and upwards of $10,000 for multiple offenses.
If you have any questions or comments, please contact Chris Burroughs at email@example.com or (703) 299-5705.