Vehicle Idle Reduction Policy

Policy on Limitations on Engine Idling
Effective January 1, 2008.

SEC. 1. Findings & Purpose

The City of Batavia finds that:

1. The Vision Statement of the City of Batavia includes the following: “Batavia is a community that preserves a strong relationship with the Environment. Batavia provides a balance of city amenities and abundant open spaces and natural areas, and considers the environmental implications of its actions.”

2. The City Council of the City of Batavia adopted its new Comprehensive Plan on December 17, 2007. That plan, in addition to stating that “Vehicle emission are a leading contributor of greenhouse gases and air pollutants” confirms the desire for Batavia to take a leading role in care for the environment.

3. Air pollution is a major health concern in Batavia, Illinois as it is in many metropolitan areas of the United States. These air pollution problems are caused in large part by emission from automobiles and trucks. Air pollution can cause or aggravate lung illnesses such as acute respiratory infections, asthma, chronic bronchitis, emphysema, and lung cancer.

4. Exhaust from vehicles (both on- and off-road) and combustion engine-powered equipment is a substantial source of carbon monoxide, and toxic air contaminants.

5. A study of idling exhaust emissions conducted by the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency indicates that trucks operating on diesel fuel emits 144 grams per hour of nitrogen oxide and 8224 grams per hour of carbon dioxide emissions and consumes 0.82 gallons of fuel per hour while idling.

6. Turning off and starting an engine will use less fuel than letting the engine run for thirty seconds.

7. Modern vehicles do not need to be warmed up before driving. The best way to warm up a vehicle is by driving it.

8. Engine wear is greater at prolonged idle than during normal operation.

9. The City of Batavia can play an important role in improving air quality and reducing the consumption of petroleum products by limiting the amount of time vehicle engines and combustion-powered equipment are allowed to idle within its jurisdiction.

10. Under this Policy, a Limitation on Engine Idling is established by the City of Batavia to discourage the unnecessary idling of City vehicle and combustion-powered equipment.

SEC. 2 Definitions

1. “Driver” means any person who drives, operates, or is in actual physical control of a vehicle.

2. “Emergency” means a sudden, urgent usually unforeseen, occurrence.

3. “Equipment Operator” means any person who is in actual physical control of a piece of off-road equipment.

4. “Gross vehicle Weight Rating” means the weight specified by the manufacturer as the loaded weight of a single vehicle.

5. “Heavy-Duty Vehicle” means any on-road motor vehicle with a manufacturer’s gross vehicle weight rating greater than 14,000 pounds.

6. “Idling” means the engine is running while the vehicle is stationary or the piece of off-road equipment is not performing work.

7. “Medium-Duty Vehicle” means any on-road motor vehicle with a manufacturer’s gross vehicle weight rating of 6,001 – 14,000 pounds.

8. “Official Traffic Control Device” means any sign, signal, marking or device placed or erected by authority of a public body or official having jurisdiction, for the purpose of regulating, warning or guiding traffic, but does not include islands, curbs, traffic barriers, speed humps, or other roadway design features.

9. “Off-Road Equipment” means all non-road equipment with a horsepower rating of 50 or more.

10. “Other Equipment” means all combustion-powered mechanical tools other than vehicles, including but not limited to lawn mowers, chain saws, leaf blowers, etc.

11. “Vehicle” means any on-road, self-propelled vehicle that is required to be registered and have a license plate by the Department of Motor Vehicles.

SEC.3. Applicability

There is hereby established a policy to be know as the Limitation on Engine Idling Policy that applies to the operation of all City of Batavia vehicles regardless of gross vehicle weight rating, all heavy-duty vehicles regardless of fuel being used, all off-road diesel-powered equipment regardless of horsepower rating, all off-road equipment regardless of fuel being used, and other equipment except as provided in Section 5.

SEC. 4. Idling Limitation

1. A driver of a licensed City of Batavia vehicle:

a. Must turn off the engine upon stopping at a destination; and

b. Must not cause or allow an engine to idle at any location for more than 30 seconds.

2. An operator of a City of Batavia off-road equipment not identified in (1) above must not cause or allow that equipment to idle at any location for:

a. More than 30 consecutive seconds.

b. A period or periods that total more than five minutes in any one-hour period.

3. An operator of other equipment must not allow the engine of such equipment to idle for more than 30 seconds.

4. The City of Batavia will ensure that vehicle and equipment drivers, upon employment and at least once per year thereafter, are informed of the requirements of this Policy.

SEC. 5. Exemptions

This Policy does not apply to a vehicle, an of-road piece of equipment or other equipment for the period or periods during which:

1. Idling is necessary while stopped:

a. For an official traffic control device

b. For an official traffic control signal

c. For traffic conditions over which a driver has no control, including, but not limited to: stopped in a line of traffic,  stopped at a railroad crossing or stopped at a construction zone; or

d. At the direction of the police or other official traffic controller

2. Idling is necessary for testing, maintenance, repair or diagnostic purposes

3. Idling is necessary to determine that the vehicle and/or off-road piece of equipment is in safe operating condition and is equipped as required by all provisions of law and established safety policies

4. The vehicle is not expected to restart due to mechanical or electrical problems

5. Idling the engine is required to power auxiliary equipment other than a heater or air conditioner, e.g. hoist, lift, safety lighting

6. Idling is necessary to operate defrosters, heaters, air conditioners or other equipment in the event of a safety or health emergency, but not solely for the comfort of the driver or passengers

7. Idling for up to fifteen minutes per hour to provide heating or cooling of a vehicle for the driver’s break if the temperature is above 80º or below 32º

8. Idling is necessary to cool down a turbo-charged heavy-duty vehicle in accordance with the manufacturer’s recommendation;

9. When otherwise necessary for reasons of driver or passenger safety;

10. Idling is necessary for law enforcement personnel in law enforcement vehicles:

a. When the vehicle is occupied in the course of law enforcement activities (e.g. monitoring traffic, surveillances, working stationary radar, writing reports, talking car-to-car, etc.);

b. When the driver is involved in an emergency incident (e.g. traffic stop, motorist assist, traffic accident, traffic direction, etc.);

c. To provide power to auxiliary police equipment (e.g. overhead emergency lighting) when the vehicle's battery alone is insufficient to meet these needs for the time - period required;

d. To provide heating or cooling of the vehicle when occupied by a police canine;

e. To thaw out snow and ice from a vehicle which has been sitting outside.