An Open Letter to People “Rolling Coal” on Michigan Roads
You ever been behind someone in a big (probably lifted) truck and they decide to "roll coal" and leave that thick, black smoke behind in their trail.
Now, I'm not sure about everyone else but it leaves me with a lot of questions...what is the purpose of this? Is there one? Do you actually think it makes you look cool? Can the cops do anything about it?
We need answers...so, like any well-adjusted people, we're going to the internet for them.
What is the Purpose of "Rolling Coal"
I guess to understand the purpose, we have to look at its origins.
Per the New York Times (NYT), those black plumes of smoke were originally often seen in truck pull competitions.
Basically, they say, the trucks are modified to be able to pump "excessive fuel" into the trucks' engines. From there, that increases their horsepower and torque.
However, NYT cites members of the truck pull community who think the people who do it in public are dumb and are just "wannabes of the sport."
Environmental Concerns, Among Others
Of course, not only do you look like a jerk and sometimes actually "smoke out" people who don't have the enclosed protection of a car and end up inhaling your cloud of diesel, but you're also poisoning the environment...if you care.
You put people at danger when you do this in more ways than you think.
For example, just recently a group of cyclists in Texas were hit and injured by some teen who thought he was cool "rolling coal." (CLICK HERE for full story)
Now, let's remind you that the Clean Air Act exists and, you know, a planet where we are consistently warned we are actively destroying and causing climate change.
I get you're doing it to "smoke out hippies" or protesters or people you don't agree with but come on...you don't have anything more constructive to do with your time?
Legality of "Rolling Coal" in Michigan
So, unfortunately, as of October of 2021, Insider says only a handful of states actually have passed legislation that makes the act of "rolling coal" illegal.
"Most state laws that ban exhaust blasts also make it illegal to add modifications to the truck that would give it the ability to create excess amounts of exhaust," Insider adds.
However, while Michigan is not one of those states that has made it illegal, a look into Michigan legislation on the issue, an excerpt from the Michigan Vehicle Code does lead one to believe making the modifications to "roll coal" is.
Here are the three most important pieces of Michigan Vehicle Code, Section 257.707:
- "A motor vehicle, including a motorcycle or moped, shall at all times be equipped with a muffler in good working order and in constant operation to prevent excessive or unusual noise and annoying smoke..."
- "The engine and power mechanism of a motor vehicle shall be so equipped and adjusted as to prevent the escape of excessive fumes or smoke."
- "A motor vehicle shall at all times be equipped with a properly operating exhaust system which shall include a tailpipe and resonator on a vehicle where the original design included a tailpipe and resonator."
So I guess, if you want to bypass all these regulations as well as pumping your black smoke into the air as you drive around a town like Jackson, it's not illegal (yet) but I can assure you not as many people think you are as cool as you think you are.
Maybe get out and actually do that in competition instead of making the world just think you are over-compensating for something with your big truck that hauls nothing but your ego.
Call me a "tree hugger", call me a snob, just quit being obnoxious...
LOOK: What major laws were passed the year you were born?