Idle Reduction Laws and Incentives in New York

The list below contains summaries of all New York laws and incentives related to idle reduction.

Laws and Regulations

Heavy-Duty Idle Reduction Requirement

Heavy-duty vehicles with a gross vehicle weight rating greater than 8,500 pounds may not idle for more than five consecutive minutes when the vehicle is not in motion. Exceptions apply, including when idling is necessary due to traffic conditions; to maintain temperatures (under regulation) for passenger comfort; to provide auxiliary power or for maintenance purposes; to recharge batteries in hybrid electric vehicles; for electric vehicles; and for emergency service vehicles. (Reference New York State Department of Environmental Conservation Regulations Chapter III, Subpart 217-3)

School Bus Idle Reduction Policy

School bus drivers or drivers of other vehicles that the school district owns, leases, or contracts must turn off the vehicle engine while loading or unloading passengers on school grounds or near a school. Exceptions include idling for mechanical work, to maintain a comfortable temperature in the vehicle, or in emergency evacuations where it is necessary to operate wheelchair lifts. Drivers should also instruct pupils on the necessity to load and unload promptly, park their vehicles diagonally to minimize exhaust from entering another bus or the school, and turn off their vehicle during sporting or other events. School districts must provide personnel with a notice outlining these provisions no later than five days after the start of the school year. These regulations remain effective until June 30, 2024. For more information, see the New York State Education Department website. (Reference New York Education Law 3637)

State Incentives

Idle Reduction and Natural Gas Vehicle (NGV) Weight Exemption

Any motor vehicle equipped with qualified idle reduction technology may exceed the state's vehicle weight limits by up to 400 pounds (lbs.) to compensate for the additional weight of the idle reduction technology. The vehicle's operator must maintain written certification of the device's weight and proof that it is fully functional and must provide this proof to a law enforcement officer upon request. Any NGV may exceed the limits by up to 2,000 lbs. (Reference New York Vehicle and Traffic Law 385)

More Laws and Incentives

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