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Vehicle Emissions Inspections to Begin in Lackawanna, Luzerne, Lycoming Counties; Emissions Inspections Now Required Annually at the Time of Safety Inspection

HARRISBURG, Pa., March 1 -- Beginning March 1, the state departments of Transportation and Environmental Protection will implement federally mandated vehicle emissions inspections in Lackawanna, Luzerne and Lycoming counties for most gasoline-powered vehicles from 1975 and newer.

The testing program will bring Pennsylvania into compliance with federal air-quality standards.

More than 141,000 vehicles in Lackawanna County, 239,000 vehicles in Luzerne County and 87,000 vehicles in Lycoming County will be subject to the emissions inspection. Emissions inspections will be required once a year during the time of the annual safety inspection.

"Not all vehicles will be required to pass an emissions inspection this month since expirations of safety inspections are spread out over a 12-month period," said Kurt Myers, PennDOT's Director of the Bureau of Motor Vehicles. "For example, motorists can get a vehicle inspected up to three months prior to the expiration of a safety inspection, and many customers may have already taken their vehicle for its safety inspection prior to today. In that case, those vehicles won't need an emissions inspection until the current safety inspection expires."

Emissions inspections can be done at any participating private garage or dealer that is certified to perform emissions inspections. Fees are market driven.

Exemptions are determined by a certified emissions inspector. Vehicles are excluded from the program if the vehicle is registered as a street rod, classic, collectible, antique or specially constructed vehicle and motorcycles.

Motorists will receive a computer-generated report that lists inspection results. A computer-generated report for a vehicle that fails will also include information regarding the cause of the failure. Passing vehicles will have an emissions sticker affixed to the windshield.

If a vehicle doesn't pass the emissions inspection, the vehicle owner must make emissions-related repairs. Once repairs are made, the vehicle can be re-inspected for free, within 30 calendar days, at the station that initially conducted the inspection. If an owner waits longer than 30 days, or takes the vehicle to a different emissions inspection station, re-inspection is not free.

For a comprehensive list of certified emissions inspection stations and their fees, visit the Drive Clean PA Web site at www.drivecleanpa.state.pa.us or call 1-800-265-0921.