New Hampshire to Begin Smoke Testing
May 23, 2000
New Hampshire state troopers will be performing roadside tests on trucks emitting visible emissions by early summer. The law that authorizes the testing and fines was enacted two years ago, but it took officials until now to figure out how to enforce it.
A computer probe will be used to test the emissions of all trucks travelling in or through the state. The probe measures the amount of visible pollutants. Standards for older trucks are less stringent than for those manufactured since 1991. Fines for polluting engines range from $100 for a first offense to $500 for a third.
"The test is designed to catch the gross emitters," said Glenn Wallace, State Department of Safety. "It is designed to catch trucks that have been tampered with or have not been maintained."
Robert Sculley, executive director of the 400-member New Hampshire Motor Transport Association, said his group supports the testing. "The fine structure, we believe, is not so punitive as to be detrimental to the industry, but it will get their (the violators) attention," he said. "What's been at issue with the public is the black smoke pouring out of trucks," he said. "If a bad segment of the industry is giving us a black eye, we're willing to clean that up."