Colorado is Smoking Out Coal Rollers; Practice to Be Made Illegal

Matt Posky
by Matt Posky
colorado is smoking out coal rollers practice to be made illegal

Rolling coal is one of the more contentious forms of automotive customization, primarily because it’s as much associated with vindictive cruelty as it is with having a good time.

In fact, there are probably more videos on YouTube of modified diesel truck owners blasting cyclists, protesters, activists, and EV drivers with sooty smoke than there are not. Over the last few years, rolling coal has become a way for many to showcase their anti-environmentalist and hard-right viewpoints. However, regardless of your politics, being on the receiving end of a diesel truck intentionally running ultra-rich is obnoxious and several states have attempted to ban the practice.

After three failed attempts, Colorado finally managed to pull it off. While earlier attempts fizzled, mainly due to concerns expressed by the Republican-controlled Senate over how regulations might affect the trucking and agriculture industries, a revised bill better addressed those concerns. Now, law enforcement will undergo training to help differentiate between a smoky work truck and those specifically designed to run rich for the purpose of rolling.

While other states — like Maryland — have tried and failed, the legislation makes Colorado only the second state to enact such a ban. New Jersey outlawed the practice in 2015, crafting a $5,000 citation, after a state assemblyman was blasted with diesel smoke in his Nissan Leaf. According to The Colorado Statesman, the state’s ban won’t be nearly that strict — just a svelte $100 penalty.

Technically, rolling coal is already a federal crime everywhere. The United States Environmental Protection Agency stated that the practice was illegal in 2014, as it violates the Clean Air Act. That law prohibits the manufacturing, installation, or sale of any part for a motor vehicle that bypasses or defeats an emission control device. Enforcing that law is, however, next to impossible. Focusing specifically on the more obvious act of rolling coal should be somewhat easier to enforce.

Senate Bill 278, sponsored in the House by Democrat JoAnn Ginal and in the Senate by Republican Don Coram, passed a final reading in the House on Tuesday by a margin of 40 to 25. It is now awaiting the governor’s signature.

[Image capture: Stancer/ YouTube]

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  • Mhardgrove Mhardgrove on May 12, 2017

    Finally! Few years back I was driving my old Smart Fourtwo in Denver past Coors Field toward the interstate/38th ave exchange. I had the top down, and some asshole in a jacked up ford with coffee can exhausts poking out the side, blew his horn to get my attention, preceded to scream something at me, and rolled coal creating a HUGE smokescreen almost causing me to crash. That exhaust was a bitch to get out of my interior. I would love to see heavy fines for tampering with the emissions and these brodozers crushed.

  • Wheatridger Wheatridger on May 21, 2017

    Some of y'all don't seem to understand how obvious this kind of mod can be. When you see a pickup bed empty except for dual six-inch exhaust stacks standing upright like the stacks of an old Mississippi River steamboat, you'll understand. Follow that truck, and pretty soon you'll see. Reminds me of a scared squid, vanishing into his own ink cloud. Like a brat pi$$ing into the punch bowl, and throwing a dead cat in the town well.

  • Tassos BTW I thought this silly thing was always called the "Wienermobile".
  • Tassos I have a first cousin with same first and last name as my own, 17 years my junior even tho he is the son of my father's older brother, who has a summer home in the same country I do, and has bought a local A3 5-door hatch kinds thing, quite old by now.Last year he told me the thing broke down and he had to do major major repairs, replace the whole engine and other stuff, and had to rent a car for two weeks in a touristy location, and amazingly he paid more for the rental ( Euro1,500, or $1,650-$1,700) than for all the repairs, which of course were not done at the dealer (I doubt there was a dealer there anyway)
  • Tassos VW's EV program losses have already been horrific, and with (guess, Caveman!) the Berlin-Brandenburg Gigafactory growing by leaps and bounds, the future was already quite grim for VW and the VW Group.THis shutdown will not be so temporary.The German Government may have to reach in its deep pockets, no matter how much it hates to spend $, and bail it out."too big to fail"?
  • Billccm I had a 1980 TC3 Horizon and that car was as reliable as the sun. Underappreciated for sure.
  • Inside Looking Out I did not notice, did they mention climate change? How they are going to fight climate change, racism and gender discrimination. I mean collective Big 3.