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Recreation Vehicle Indus. Ass'n v. EPA

Citation: 11 ELR 20587
No. Nos. 76-1875, 78-1117, 653 F.2d 562/15 ERC 2089/(D.C. Cir., 04/16/1981)

The court upholds the Environmental Protection Agency's (EPA's) decision to regulate motor homes as "medium and heavy trucks" for purposes of the Noise Control Act of 1972. EPA had issued noise emission control standards pursuant to § 6(a) of the Act applicable to medium and heavy trucks, including but not explicitly listing motor homes. The court rejects EPA's assertions that the court lacks jurisdiction since petitioners failed to challenge the regulations within 90 days after promulgation of the regulations as required by the Act. Petitioners cannot be reasonably expected to petition for review until they are on notice that the regulations apply to them. The court finds that EPA did not abuse its discretion in applying truck noise emission standards to motorhomes. Given the similarities between chasis designs for motor homes and trucks, EPA was free to consider motor homes part of the medium and heavy trucks class. EPA is not required to issue regulations for each subclass of trucks. Applying a deferential standard of review, the court finds that EPA's decision is adequately supported in the record. The noise standards do not place an unreasonable burden on motor home manufacturers since noise reduction devices are readily available and the cost of testing is small. Finally, the court rules that EPA properly applied the regulations to Chrysler motor homes, claimed to be unique, since Chrysler did not object during the rulemaking proceeding or in a timely-filed petition for review.

Counsel for Petitioner
Maurice H. McBride, David J. Humphreys, Henry G. Pons, Edmund C. Burnett
Humphreys, Loftus & McBride
P.O. Box 241, 14650 Lee Rd., Chantilly VA 22021 (703) 968-7755

Counsel for Respondent
Barbara H. Brandon, Joan Z. Bernstein, Ronald S. Naveen, Gloria J. Ellis
Office of the General Counsel
Environmental Protection Agency, Washington DC 20460
(202) 755-2511

James W. Moorman, Ass't Attorney General; Angus C. Macbeth, Thomas A. Pursley, Peter R. Taft, Charlotte Uram
Land and Natural Resources Division
Department of Justice, Washington DC 20530
(202) 633-2701

Before ROBINSON, MacKINNON and ROBB, Circuit Judges.