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CARB Regulations

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New CARB Regulations Affect Trucking Companies

With the arrival of 2013, California instituted new regulations for motor carriers operating in the state. The guidelines will affect small and large trucking companies. In addition, trucks that are from the year 2000 to 2004 also face changes. For instance, heavy trucks that were made from 2000 to 2004 must install approved soot, or PM, filters. PM filters are diesel particulate units that ensure a vehicle’s emissions are compliant with the state’s regulations. California will permit carriers to comply with the new regulations gradually. However, they must notify the state of their intentions, and the fleets that wish to delay must comply with California’s deadlines.

Small Fleet Regulations

California defines a small fleet as a company that owns one to 20 diesel trucks. Companies with small fleets that request a delay for the state’s PM filter requirements have until January 1, 2014 to complete the first upgrade, which is 25 percent of its vehicle fleet. The company must convert 50 percent of its fleet by January 1, 2015, and it must have new filters on 75 percent of its fleet by January 1, 2016. All of the company’s trucks must be equipped with PM filters by January 1, 2017.

Small fleet companies can meet the state’s PM filter conditions by installing a high-level retrofitted device that California has approved, or it can upgrade to a PM filter that is standard on the 2007 engines. Companies can also install a newer engine. Small fleet organizations may delay replacing parts on their heavier trucks to January 1, 2023 as long as the company’s fleet features PM filters by January 1, 2014. To qualify, the company must report that they need to extend the dates and verify that their vehicle’s are filter compliant.

Large Fleet Regulations

The state considers companies that are running 21 or more trucks to be large fleet operations. Large trucking operations must abide by the same upgrade schedule as small trucking companies. However, they may qualify for the extended deadline if they were compliant with California’s rules during January 2012.


Trucks towing 53-foot trailers must be SmartWay certified with aerodynamic upgrades. The program features ways to save fuel and reduce emissions. In addition, the new regulations require low rolling resistance tires for trailers that were made in or before 2010. The tire deadline was January 1, 2013.

By following the guidelines put in place by the California Air Resource Board, or CARB, trucking companies can operate comfortably in and out of the state of California.