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New England companies pay penalties for tampering with diesel emissions controls

Settlements resolve allegations against Maine and Massachusetts businesses that they sold or installed ‘defeat devices

Boston—The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) has reached settlements with two New England companies engaged in the sales or installation of devices that tamper with emission controls on diesel vehicles.

The first settlement, with Diesel Fuel Systems, Inc. of Bangor, Maine, resolved EPA’s allegations that the company sold and installed aftermarket parts, known as “defeat devices,” from 2019 to 2021 in violation of the federal Clean Air Act. Under the terms of the settlement, Diesel Fuel Systems agreed to pay a penalty of $100,000, certified to EPA that it will destroy all tampered equipment, and has ceased the sale and installation of such defeat devices.

EPA also entered into an Expedited Settlement Agreement with 21 Motorsports, an online retailer based in Clinton, Mass., resolving allegations it sold 11 aftermarket emissions tampering devices. The company agreed to pay a penalty of $5,697, under a pilot program for addressing smaller-scale vehicle tampering violations, and certified that it has ceased the sale of defeat devices.

Tampering with a vehicle’s emissions control system is illegal under the Clean Air Act (CAA). The CAA prohibits manufacturing, selling, offering for sale, and installing aftermarket devices that disable, bypass, or reduce the effectiveness of emission control systems.

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