A vehicle idles when its engine is running but the vehicle is not in motion. Idling not only wastes fuel, it contributes to air pollution and the emission of toxins that cause cancer and other serious health effects, including asthma. According to the EPA, air quality monitoring at schools has shown elevated levels of benzene, formaldehyde, and other toxins in the time just after school pick up.
Repeated and prolonged exposure to these toxins can reduce lung function and, as asthma rates continue to rise among students. The 2014 Community Report Card on the Status of Children, Youth and Families from the Arlington Partnership for Children, Youth and Families found a 69% rise in asthma in APS elementary students between 2009-10 and 2013-14), experts are finding that vehicle idling negatively impacts children’s health.