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EPA fines repair shops in Iowa, Missouri and Nebraska for ‘defeat device’ violations

More than $200,000 in fines issued for installing devices to render emissions controls inoperative

Lenexa, Kan.—The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) has penalized three companies to resolve alleged violations of the federal Clean Air Act (CAA). According to EPA, the companies installed and/or sold illegal “defeat devices” in vehicle engines designed to render emissions controls inoperative.

Central Iowa Truck Repair LLC of Boone, Iowa, will pay a civil penalty of $95,371; R.T.R. Roger’s Truck Repair LLC of Fenton, Missouri, will pay $46,316; and Husker Diesel Inc. of Gretna, Nebraska, will pay $60,150.

“Modifying auto emissions controls is illegal, contributes significantly to harmful air pollution, and makes it harder to meet air quality standards,” said David Cozad, director of EPA Region 7’s Enforcement and Compliance Assurance Division.

As part of their settlements with EPA, all three companies agreed to demolish their inventories of defeat device components and certified that they stopped selling or installing devices that disable vehicle emission controls.

R.T.R. Roger’s Truck Repair and Husker Diesel are in communities that are already disproportionately affected by pollution. Additionally, R.T.R. Roger’s Truck Repair is in St. Louis County, which is an ozone non-attainment area, meaning that it does not meet the CAA national ambient air quality standard for ozone.

Tampering with vehicle engines, including installation of aftermarket defeat devices intended to bypass manufacturer emissions controls, results in significantly higher releases of nitrogen oxides and particulate matter.

EPA identified stopping aftermarket defeat devices for vehicles and engines as one of six National Compliance Initiatives announced in 2019 and is a top priority for the agency.

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