The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency settled with two shops in Sussex County that were tied to the sale and installation of aftermarket devices that were designed to defeat the emissions control systems of diesel engines.
The companies – Delaware Speed and Custom LLC in Milton, and Bo Daddy’s Diesel and Auto Repair in Seaford – allegedly violated the Clean Air Act’s prohibition on the manufacture, sale or installation of so-called “defeat devices.”
The devices are designed to “bypass, defeat or render inoperative” a vehicle’s air pollution control equipment or systems.
The defeat systems have been blamed for a lack of progress in curbing diesel emissions.
Delaware Speed and Custom LLC paid a $12,529 penalty for allegedly selling defeat devices, and Bo Daddy’s paid a $6,000 penalty for allegedly selling and installing defeat devices.
Clean Air Act penalties take account of various factors such as the seriousness and duration of the violations, size of the business, the penalty’s impact on the business, compliance history, good faith efforts, and economic benefit of past non-compliance.
As part of the settlements, the companies have certified that they are now are in compliance with applicable requirements.
These enforcement actions are part of EPA’s National Compliance Initiative for Stopping Aftermarket Defeat Devices for Vehicles and Engines.
Vehicles emit far less pollution than vehicles of the past, due to engine calibrations, and the use of filters and catalysts in the exhaust system.
EPA testing has shown that a truck’s emissions increase drastically (tens or hundreds of times, depending on the pollutant) when its emissions controls are removed.
Technology that bypasses pollution systems is believed to be widely used in diesel powered pickup trucks.