Pima County Logo
  • Increase font size
  • Decrease font size
  • Print
  • RSS
  • PDEQ suggests idling less on Halloween

    Oct 24, 2018 | Read More News
    Share this page
    Halloween is approaching and plans are being made for trick-or-treaters to walk through neighborhoods, show off their costumes and gather tasty treats. The Pima County Department of Environmental Quality’s Clean Air Program suggests that instead of letting your vehicle engine idle while the kids are moving from house to house, you consider parking and walking to keep the air free from health-damaging vehicle emissions.halloween
     
    Exhaust from idling vehicles is not good for anyone to breathe, particularly the lungs of young superheroes, princesses, zombies and ninjas. Although invisible, vehicle exhaust can contain poisonous gases and chemicals including carbon monoxide, sulfur dioxide, nitrogen oxides, formaldehyde, benzene and soot. Breathing these fumes is particularly harmful for children because their lungs are not fully developed and they tend to be more active and breathe more rapidly than adults, so they inhale more of the toxic gases. Studies have linked various negative health outcomes in children exposed to vehicle pollution including:
    • Reduced lung function
    • Respiratory infection
    • Decreased cognitive performance
    • Asthma and chronic respiratory symptoms
     Contrary to popular belief, if you are going to be idling your vehicle for more than a short period, it makes financial, mechanical and air quality sense to turn your engine off (except in traffic). Idling for more than 10 seconds uses more fuel and emits more greenhouse gases than turning off and restarting the engine. You will also protect your car’s engine if you idle less because idling can cause damage to engine parts like cylinders, spark plugs and the exhaust system.
     
    No matter if you are waiting for your favorite unicorn on Halloween or stopping by a fast food restaurant or bank, avoiding engine idling will help keep the air from getting scary to breathe. For more information, visit the idle reduction page at www.pima.gov/deq.