First Transit Buses Polluting Connecticut Communities

CLF to sue for Clean Air Act violations

Photo: Oliver Foerstner via Shutterstock

January 24, 2022 (NEW HAVEN, CT) – Conservation Law Foundation (CLF) has notified First Transit Inc. of its intent to sue for Clean Air Act violations. The company’s buses have been unlawfully idling in communities across Connecticut and spreading toxic emissions and pollution into homes and neighborhoods.

“First Transit repeatedly violates important anti-idling laws designed to reduce dangerous tailpipe pollution,” said Heather Govern, Vice President of Clean Air and Water at CLF. “In order to prevent further harm to public health and our environment, the company must put an end to this unlawful behavior.”

First Transit provides shuttle services for Yale University and operates Connecticut Transit public buses in Greater Hartford, New Haven, and Stamford.

CLF found buses frequently violating the Connecticut anti-idling law that limits unnecessary engine idling to three minutes. Idling exhaust can cause lung damage, aggravate conditions like asthma and bronchitis, and has been linked to increased incidence of heart disease, multiple kinds of cancer, and premature death.

In addition, recent studies have found that particulate air pollution can make people more susceptible to COVID-19 infection and may bring the virus into their lungs.

The notice to First Transit comes after CLF sued All Star Transportation for similar violations earlier this year. DATTCO also agreed to a nearly $2 million settlement after CLF brought a similar lawsuit.

CLF experts are available for further comment.