Reduce Asthma Caused by Soot

» One out of every three households in Philadelphia has a member with asthma. Asthma is the leading cause of missed school days and the hospitalization of children.34

» Scientists have found that children who live close to a busy road are 50% more likely to have asthma than those who live farther from local traffic.

» Asthma symptoms also increase in children who live near truck traffic.35

Install modern pollution-control devices on older city diesel trucks.


In order to improve the city and make each neighborhood a better place to live, the city of Philadelphia should install pollution-control devices on its older trucks. Philadelphia's older, dirty diesel trucks rumble through our neighborhoods every day, spewing black soot, pollutants, and close to 40 toxins that have been proven to increase asthma attacks, cancer, and heart disease.28 Children and low-income African American Philadelphians are particularly at risk.29 The American Lung Association has found that diesel trucks are one of the biggest sources of air pollution in many communities.30

Given that Philadelphia was named one of America's Asthma Capitals and ranked in 2006 as the third worst place to live in the country if you have asthma, the need for change is urgent.31 Philadelphia cannot afford to replace all its aging diesel vehicles immediately. However, the city can remove a significant percentage of soot (scientists call this particulate matter) in neighborhoods by installing a small pollution-control device on older city vehicles.32

Adding pollution-control devices will protect residents as well as bus and truck drivers and riders, who are exposed to up to four times more toxic diesel exhaust than someone standing beside the diesel bus or truck.33 By installing a simple device on the tailpipes of older diesel city vehicles or by adding a modern muffler with pollution control, the city can slash dangerous emissions and keep residents healthier.