Idling regulations

Vehicle emissions are a contributing factor in climate change. By reducing unnecessary idling, we are helping to improve the quality of the air in Vancouver.

Idling means running the engine of a motor vehicle when the vehicle is not in motion.

Under section 2.7 of the Motor Vehicle Noise and Emission Abatement By-law 9344 (40 KB), it is illegal to idle a vehicle:

  • For more than 3 consecutive minutes in a 60-minute period, or
  • While unattended and unlocked

Idling exceptions

The idling regulation applies to all vehicles, except when a:

  • Vehicle is attached to equipment, and the equipment needs power from the engine in order to run, for a commercial or public purpose
  • Emergency vehicle in the course of performing its duties, including training
  • Motor vehicle assisting in an emergency
  • Armoured vehicle used to transport money or valuables, while loading or unloading
  • Motor vehicle in the course of a race or parade approved by Vancouver City Council
  • Bus while passengers are loading or unloading