Release 07-12      
March 12, 2007


Jerry Martin
Patricia Rey
(916) 322-2990

Husqvarna Outdoor Products Settles with ARB for $281,600

SACRAMENTO - The Air Resources Board (ARB) has settled with Husqvarna Outdoor Products (HOP) for a total of $281,600 for selling engines in California that violate state air quality labeling requirements.

"Compliance with California regulations is a crucial component in our endeavor to improve air quality and to protect public health," said ARB Executive Officer Catherine Witherspoon. "We need to assure Californians that those manufacturers who distribute engines, big or small, not meeting our standards will be held fully accountable for their actions."

HOP, headquartered in Georgia, produces engines used to power weed trimmers sold under the Sears Craftsman line. A citizen's tip fueled an ARB investigation which revealed that the engine in the trimmers had an additional separate label reading "Not for sale in California." This is a violation of the California Code of Regulations and the Health and Safety Code. HOP and Sears fully cooperated with ARB and submitted documentation showing that 2,816 of the mislabeled trimmers were sold in this state.

Because Sears did not receive advance notification to segregate the unsound units, HOP voluntarily settled the case and assumed the entire penalty. The $281,600 will be made payable to the Air Pollution Control Fund which is used to mitigate various sources of pollution through education, and the advancement and use of cleaner technology.

The Air Resources Board is a department of the California Environmental Protection Agency. ARB's mission is to promote and protect public health, welfare, and ecological resources through effective reduction of air pollutants while recognizing and considering effects on the economy. The ARB oversees all air pollution control efforts in California to attain and maintain health based air quality standards.