Ontario to tighten emissions testing for trucks

by Abdul Latheef

TORONTO, Ont. – Ontario will soon announce a re-designed emissions testing program for heavy-duty diesel vehicles, a government source has told Truck News.

The program, to be announced this fall, will focus on improving testing. It will also include new measures to prevent tampering with emissions control systems.

“Part of the redesigned program will include strengthened enforcement through increased on-road inspections, which will focus on heavy-duty diesel vehicles and heavily polluting modified vehicles to ensure that emissions control components are installed and functioning,” the source at the Ministry of the Environment, Conservation and Parks said.

In December, Reg. 361/98 (Motor Vehicles) under the Environmental Protection Act was amended to make current tampering restrictions applicable to out of province vehicles on Ontario roads.

Until then, the rule was applied only to Ontario-plated vehicles.

The government said the amendment created a level playing field between all transportation companies by making all users of roads subject to on-road enforcement.

During a recent fleet inspection, the ministry reported that officers had found that pollution control equipment on 13 trucks had been tampered with by one company.

“The company committed to an interim plan to repair the modified trucks, and in April 2019 the company completed all the necessary repairs,” it said.

Truckers have long complained about the problem-plagued emissions aftertreatment systems (ATS), which are mandatory on all new rigs.

They say qualified ATS technicians are few and far between, and owners are forced to tow their trucks to dealerships to fix minor problems on the supersensitive ATS sensors.

Industry lobbying groups have been calling for a crackdown on service providers who offer to remove the emission control systems and reprogram the engine to make it more “fuel efficient.”

In 2014, about 23% greenhouse gas emissions in Canada came from the transportation sector, and heavy-duty vehicles accounted for about 8% of total GHG emissions in the country, according to the government.




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  • Some of the modifications were necessary to even use the new trucks and consideration should be given for our being used as testing grounds while these emissions controls were being perfected

  • This is a Bunch of BS. I for one will never Run a New Truck due to the Headaches and Down Time these New Trucks have. It’s not about the Safety Anymore. How can it be safe when these Plastic Pieces of Junk are parked on the Side of the Road waiting for a Service Truck or a Tow? When one of these so called “Green Trucks” catch fire because of a ReGen Gone Wrong what is in the Smoke from this? It would take a Lot of Black Smoke From My Pipes to even compare to this. Don’t even get me started on these Plastic DEF Bottles Packaged in Cardboard Boxes you see scattered everywhere. Anyone that knows anything about performance will tell you the easier an engine breathes,the better it will work. Can’t see where chocking the life out of these Boat Anchors are doing anything but making the Truck Manufacturers, Fuel Companies, and of Course….Our “Elected Officials” Rich. Oh and by the way…I drive a 1999 W900 Kenworth that is Not Governed by any means with a 550 3406E CAT that is Tuned to Perform like an Engine Should Be. I get Very Respectable Fuel Mileage for Hauling Time Sensitive Freight (Seafood) on the East Coast without all the Hassles and Hoops drivers have to go through in Ontario. Almost Hate to Say I was Born in Hamilton.

  • Common sense says that there has to be a reason why the owner of a heavy truck would spend $10,000 or more to have the emissions system removed. This is not something done for no reason.

    Large trucking companies hire and train maintenance staff on how to deal with these emissions problems. They have multiple units, so on an average they can cover the negative costs associated with all the problems with the emissions systems. A single truck owner operator can not afford to have his truck towed and left sitting at a dealership for weeks waiting for someone to figure out what’s wrong.

    Perhaps the government officials , who are elected by the people, would be making better use of their time finding out why truck owners are deleting these systems, instead of spending money targeting them. There is a problem here that the government is partially responsible for. It was the government that mandated these systems before the technology was proven, and the trucking companies are being used as Guinea Pigs. If this were a safety related issue the emissions systems would have been recalled long ago!

    I own a diesel powered pickup truck. Two weeks ago I took my pickup in to the dealer. They told me that there was a recall that was required to reset the emissions system. When I get my pickup back from the dealer I find it is using more fuel and has some hesitation. The dealer tells me that the emissions system is set to the latest government standards and that’s the end of the conversation. Something’s not right here!

    • Your point is well made Bryant. Technology needs to prove better efficiencies not just on pollution control but for fuel consumption also before implementation of a policy that undermines both of those points. I’m as green conscious as they come and I have to say that when a truck owner goes to the extent of ‘investing’ $10,000 to remove an emissions control system that isn’t a decision that is taken lightly. If removing the ATS means that fuel burns cleaner, the rig gets better mileage and there’s less downtime, then why have these systems in place to begin with? I agree it’s a government and manufacturer cash grab at the expense of the operator.

  • The transportation sector also includes planes, trains and ships. I don’t see any of them having to endure any of these emissions issues.

  • What about the railroad you ever notice the smoke those things put out..oh wait i guess the government own those

  • This will take out all the small trucking companies, modifications has be made on some trucks just so it will actually run , it’s another money grab like always and it’s not fair

  • The government doesn’t care .How much it cost for repairs and how much time it takes to get fixed and back on the road. Please explain how do we save the planet if we consum more fuel more parts to be replaced on vehicles. And putting us out of business. Politician are a bunch of people sold to big corporations.

  • Why do you copy everything California does??

    If a truck passes emission test what’s the big problem if it’s deleted or not

    I seen with my own eyes a truck that dpf take a emission test then they put one that was deleted and guess what the one that was deleted was much more cleaner

    This govnt is just money hungary

  • The People making these decisions Have know idea how a truck operates. yet they can blindly make decisions that effect Owners, operators and mechanics. the cost of operating a truck is getting out of control. working on trucks is getting out of control. but we need trucking and utility trucks and hundreds of other kinds of truck to make society work and operate. yet they are making it damn near impossible for us to make it happen, seeking the advice from companies that have monopolies. All to chock out the small guys. its getting to be to ridiculous, just the opinion of a Mechanic!

  • Why the ever living hell do they lump 1 ton pickups in this group?! My F350 with a 6.4L is the exact same as the F250 with a 6.4L and yet I get crapped on as a “heavy duty diesel” and the 250 does not. Not to mention these smaller diesels get absolute garbage mileage with the ATS systems installed and the engines fail after 100k due to excessive washdown from the extra fuel during regens. Then there is massive amount of packaging waste with DEF containers. How much pollution is generated just making the DEF and the box, and the plastic carton it comes in, then shipping to the stores before it gets put in a personal use pickup that generates 0.0001% of GHGs. It’s purely about making money.