Jan 092013

This is a reminder in case you may have occasion to travel into California.

In case you forgot or missed it the first time around, the Motorcycle Anti-Tampering Act (SB 435) went into effect January 1, 2013. Signed into law by Governator, Arnold Schwarzenegger, in late 2010, the law authorizes the PoPo to cite motorcycle owners with non-compliant exhaust systems and ticket them with a noise pollution violation. SB 435 requires motorcycles and aftermarket motorcycle exhaust systems made on or after January 1st to display an EPA sound emissions label. Motorcycles produced prior to this date cannot be ticketed under SB 435. Motorcyclists must also first be pulled over for violating another traffic law such as speeding, illegal U-turn, etc. Police are not allowed to pull over a motorcyclist with the sole intention of an SB 435 infraction. First time offenders will face a fine between $50 to $100 — a fine that can be dismissed with proof of correction. A second offense raises the fine to $100 to $250 with no provision for dismissing the fine with proof of correction. Meaning, you can’t keep reinstalling your stock exhaust every time you get caught and pay nothing. An argument against SB 435 is the emasculated EPA has no power for enforcing the correct placement of its mandated label for exhaust systems, on OEM or aftermarket exhaust systems. Thus, it’s difficult to find the EPA label, especially on motorcycles with bodywork, and unreasonable to expect police officers to be able to easily locate the label. It’s also unreasonable to expect a motorcyclist to disassemble the bike’s exhaust system in an effort to find the label.

The law was originally opposed by both the American Motorcyclist Association (AMA) and the Motorcycle Industry Council (MIC). These two organizations both recommended the J2825 standard developed by the Society of Automotive Engineers. The MIC is currently working with the California Air Resources Board (CARB) and the EPA on adopting J2825.

For now it is suggested that to avoid any unwarranted tickets regarding your bike’s exhaust system, the owner should carry receipts or other forms of proof regarding the date of manufacture of the motorcycle, when the exhaust was installed and/or purchased, etc.

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