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Posted: Wednesday, February 13th 2013 at 9:38am

Oakwood hopes new policy will save fuel, reduce pollution

By Ken Stanford Staff
EMAIL STORY CONTACT EDITOR PRINT
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Oakwood City Manager Stan Brown (File photo)
OAKWOOD - The city of Oakwood hopes a new policy covering city vehicles will reduce air pollution and cut the cost of fuel for its fleet.

City Manager Stan Brown said Wednesday the council on Monday adopted "An Idle-Reduction policy for city vehicles and equipment. The intent of the policy is to reduce idling of vehicles in order to enhance air quality and to safe fuel."

The policy sets parameters for initial warm-up; places limits on idling time, while providing for emergency situations; and leaves it to the operator's discretion "where safety may be compromised by shutting down the engine." (A copy of the ordinance is posted below.)

Also at the meeting, Mayor Lamar Scroggs, who has held the office since 1976, announced that he will seek re-election in this year's Nov. 5 city election. Councilman Sam Evans, who has been a council member since 1999, also announced plans to run again.

Qualifying will open Aug. 26 and end Aug. 28. The qualifying fees are $324 for mayor and $216 for council.


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City of Oakwood
STANDARD OPERATING PROCEDURE

Vehicle & Equipment Idle Reduction Policy




1.0 PURPOSE:

The City of Oakwood is committed to the reduction of unnecessary vehicle / equipment idling as a means of reducing air pollution and fuel expense. The City is committed to the best environmental practices possible. The purpose of this policy is to establish guidelines for the idling of municipal vehicles and equipment. Limiting idling times reduces air pollution and greenhouse gas emissions, contributes to healthier work environments and the efficient use of City resources.

2.0 SCOPE:

This policy applies to all City of Oakwood vehicles and equipment.

3.0 DEFINITIONS:

3.1 IDLING:
Idling is the operation of a vehicle or equipment while it is not in motion and not being used to operate related auxiliary equipment.

3.2 FUELS
This policy applies to all vehicles or equipment items that operate on gasoline, diesel, propane or natural gas.

3.3 VEHICLES
For the purpose of this policy, “vehicles or equipment items” refers to cars, light trucks, vans, heavy trucks, loaders, backhoes, graders, packers and any other equipment operated by staff.

4.0 PROCEDURES:

4.1 MANUFACTURERS GUIDELINES (Recommendations)
Always follow the manufacturer’s guidelines and recommendations for idling.


4.2 INITIAL WARM-UP (Gasoline and alternative fueled vehicles)
Idle times up to five (5) minutes are allowed for vehicles during their initial shift warm up and subsequent times when the vehicle is being restarted after a prolonged period of shut down resulting in vehicle conditions similar to those prior to initial shift warm up.

4.3 INITIAL WARM – UP (Diesel Fueled Vehicles and Equipment)
Idle times up to five (5) minutes may be allowed for diesel fueled vehicles/equipment during initial shift warm up, and subsequent times when the vehicles/equipment are/is restarted after a prolonged period of shut down.

Note: Most Fuel Injected engines today require only 30 seconds to 1 minute of running time to circulate fluids to get ready to drive even in winter conditions.

5.0 OPERATION OF EQUIPMENT IN THE FIELD:

5.1 OPERATION OF GASOLINE AND ALTERNATIVE FUEL VEHICLES
No operator shall idle the engine of an unleaded fuel vehicle in excess of 1 minute, if the vehicle is stopped for a foreseeable period of time. Operators making multiple or frequent stops that require their vehicles to be stationary for time periods of several minutes may idle up to 3 minutes in such circumstances.

5.2 DIESEL FUELED VEHICLES / EQUIPMENT
No operator shall idle the engine of a diesel fueled vehicle in excess of 3 minutes if the vehicle is stopped for a foreseeable period of time. Diesel fueled vehicles/equipment should only be turned off after enough time has passed to allow the proper circulation and cooling of the engine oil, coolant, and turbo chargers, not to exceed five (5) minutes.

WHEN ENGINES MUST BE LEFT RUNNING FOR ANY REASON, THE
OPERATOR MUST REMAIN WITH THE VEHICLE.

6.0 EXEMPTIONS:

This policy does not apply to the following vehicles, equipment or situations. Operators must use their own discretion in certain situations.

6.1 Emergency vehicles and equipment are exempt while engaged in operational activities such as police or emergency response services. However, operators are still encouraged to shut vehicles off whenever possible.

6.2 Vehicles assisting in an emergency activity.

6.3 Where engine power is necessary for an associated power need such as, but not limited to, electrical power, compressed air, and various power take off devises such as auxiliary hydraulics.

6.4 Vehicles may idle for the purpose of defogging, defrosting or deicing windows and must include the use of a scraper. Idling must end when fog, frost, or ice conditions have been eliminated.

6.5 Vehicles used solely to power emergency lighting and two-way radios can operate the lighting for 30 minutes while turned off and can be idled at intervals to charge batteries. The City will implement the use of alternative lighting sources to mitigate the need for additional battery power for this type of lighting. (i.e. L.E.D.)

6.6 Staff may idle vehicles/equipment for the purpose of getting warm and/or dry if indoor accommodations are not available at the work site.

6.7 During the winter season with below freezing temperatures and/or blizzard conditions, extended idling periods may be necessary for the well being of the operator and passengers.

6.8 During the summer season extended idling periods may be required when temperatures are above thirty (30) degrees Celsius (86) degrees Fahrenheit. Heat stress under these conditions is likely and air-conditioned vehicles could be considered for use as relief stations. Engine idling for this purpose will be permitted only when the operator or a person with heat stress symptoms remains in the vehicle.

6.9 This policy does not apply to vehicles being serviced or inspected.

6.10 Where safety may be compromised by shutting down the engine, vehicles/equipment may idle at the discretion of the operator.



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