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WHAT IS A BREAKDOWN?

An unforeseeable failure or malfunction of equipment, air pollution control equipment, or related operating equipment which causes a violation of any rule, law, permit condition, or emission limitation; or any in-stack continuous emission monitoring (CEM) equipment failure or malfunction.

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WHY SHOULD A FACILITY CALL IN A BREAKDOWN?

Because the facility may qualify for relief from enforcement for up to 24 hours or the end of the production run, whichever is sooner.  CEM equipment breakdowns may qualify for up to 96 hours of relief.  If need be, the facility may apply for an emergency variance to give it more time to solve the problem causing the violation.

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WHAT DOES A FACILITY HAVE TO DO TO RECEIVE BREAKDOWN RELIEF

  • Notify the District of the breakdown by telephone, fax or email within one hour after its detection.

  • Your notification should include the time, specific location, equipment involved, and the cause of the occurrence (to the extent known)

  • Do not report breakdowns unless a District rule or permit condition will be violated as a result of the breakdown.

  • The breakdown or failure must not be the result of neglect or disregard of any rule or regulation.

  • The breakdown must not be the result of improper maintenance or operator error.

  • The condition cannot create a nuisance.

  • The breakdown or failure must not be of a recurrent nature.

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WHO DETERMINES WHETHER OR NOT A BREAKDOWN IS ELIGIBLE FOR RELIEF?

The District will investigate and determine whether the condition constitutes a breakdown.  If it determines that the condition does not constitute a breakdown, the facility will be notified of the denial.  Additionally, the Air Pollution Control Officer may take appropriate enforcement action.

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ARE THERE OTHER REQUIREMENTS?

Yes.  The facility must submit a written report within 10 days after a breakdown condition has been corrected.  The report must include:

  • A statement that the condition has been corrected, the date corrected, and proof of compliance.

  • A detailed description of the cause of the breakdown.

  • A description of the corrective measures taken to stop the problem and actions taken to avoid future occurrences.  (Steps must be taken to avoid future occurrences, or breakdown relief may not be granted.)

  • Picture of the equipment that failed, if available.

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SHOULD THE FACILITY REQUEST AN EMERGENCY VARIANCE?

If the breakdown is expected to last more than 24 hours (96 hours for CEM equipment) the facility should request an emergency variance prior to the expiration of the breakdown period.

An emergency variance can grant the facility up to 30 days to repair the breakdown and achieve compliance.

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For more information about breakdowns please consult District Rule 1100 or the nearest Regional Compliance Office

San Joaquin Valley Unified Air Pollution Control District

4800 Enterprise Way                                 1990 E. Gettysburg                            34946 Flyover Court

Modesto CA 95356                                    Fresno, CA  93721                             Bakersfield, CA  93308

(209) 557-6400                                            (559) 230-5950                                  (661) 392-5500

Fax:  (209) 557-6475                                   Fax: (559) 230-6062                          (661) 392-5585

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