DETROIT, MI — Federal regulators have fined two Oakland County businesses $350,000 for selling aftermarket products that bypass emission controls on diesel engines.
Green Diesel Engineering LLC and CAV Engineering LLC of Commerce Township will pay the fine and settle a case brought by the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA), which says they are violating the Clean Air Act by selling products with ‘defeat’ diesel vehicle emission controls.
Both companies are owned by Keith Cavallini, who told the Detroit News that he stopped the sales in 2019 but agreed to the fine because it was easier than negotiating with the EPA.
The EPA says Cavallini must cease all diesel tampering and stop making and selling such devices.
Removing emissions controls pollutes the air by increasing the output of nitrogen oxides, particulate matter, carbon monoxide and hydrocarbons, EPA says.
“Selling and installing defeat devices on vehicles and engines will not be tolerated,” said Debra Shore, EPA Region 5 administrator. “Emission control systems on vehicles protect public health by reducing pollution, which is why EPA is committed to ensuring that companies comply with the Clean Air Act.”
In a May consent order, the EPA says Green Diesel Engineering marketed, sold or installed more than 6,450 such software devices for Dodge, Jeep, Mercedes, General Motors, Volkswagen and Audi models under the names “Hot Tune,” “Eco Tune,” “Tune Update,” and “Custom Tune.”
According to the EPA, the company tuned some 2014-2016 Dodge Ram and Jeep Grand Cherokee models that were part of a Fiat Chrysler recall and repair program that installed emissions control software after the automaker was found in 2019 to have built them with cheat software designed to make them emit less pollutants during testing.
Green Disesel Engineering was previously fined $50,000 by the state of California in 2018 for selling aftermarket emissions bypass products.
The EPA violations followed a 2019 Green Diesel Engineering inspection and test on a 2014 Black Ram 1500.
The EPA’s crackdown on diesel emissions cheating began with onset of the Volkswagen scandal in 2015. The agency began focusing more on aftermarket devices in recent years.
Last year, two Oakland County companies, Diesel Ops LLC and Orion Diesel LLC, were fined $10 million for selling defeat devices.
In April, federal prosecutors announced charges against 11 Michigan men and three companies, including Griffin Transportation of Grand Rapids, whom investigators say were involved in a complex aftermarket scheme to evade emission controls on semitrucks.
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