Mobile Source Controls: Idling

Idling controls reduce emissions by turning off the engine when a vehicle is not in motion. This is accomplished using anti-idling technology, laws or regulations.  Truck drivers are especially vulnerable to adverse health impacts from idling vehicles given the amount of time they are exposed.  In addition, residents living near freeways and heavy use areas, such as customs plazas, bridges and intermodal facilities, would also benefit.  Current actions include an anti-idling ordinance passed by the City of Detroit in 2010 and enforced by the Detroit Police Department (Traffic Enforcement Division); the Detroit-based Anti-Idling Workgroup that works to raise awareness about the Detroit ordinance and to support and encourage enforcement; other efforts to designate, publicize and enforce truck routes in the city (1),  and the use of community truck surveys to document truck routes, raise awareness within communities, and advocate for changes in truck routes.(2)   Additional anti-idling steps that could be implemented include the development and implementation of anti-idling hotlines and web-based tools to allow residents to report idling violations; expanding enforcement by enabling multiple agencies to enforce the anti-idling ordinance; creating county- or state-level anti-idling restrictions to allow county and state agencies to enforce idling restrictions; encouraging or requiring idling reduction technologies and drivers lounges, for example, at the customs plaza at the new Gordie Howe Bridge; using incentives for drivers to reduce idling; and raising awareness through city-wide campaigns (e.g., with signage) and using EPA’s Smartway Partnerships.

1. DEA (The Detroit Environmental Agenda).  2013.  Available pg. 50: [accessed 2-10-16] 

2.  SDEV (Southwest Detroit Community Benefits Coalition.  Progress.  Available: [accessed 2-11-16].)


Contact CAPHE

Alison Walding
Project Manager
Community Action to Promote Healthy Environments

University of Michigan School of Public Health
1415 Washington Heights
Ann Arbor, MI 48109-2029