The detection of rebated oil in road vehicles as fuel is carried
out by the Road Fuel Testing Unit (RFTU).
The RFTU is equipped as a mobile laboratory to enable samples of road fuel to be taken and field tested at the roadside or at commercial premises for the presence of a prescribed marker.
There are 17 RFTUs manned by 34 crews based in the regions. Each RFTU is staffed by a Testing officer and an Assistant Testing Officer.
The work of the RFTU is co-ordinated by a Road Fuel Control Officer (RFCO)
Detection Road Fuel Testing Units (RFTUs) test for drivers’ compliance with HODA.
It is a criminal offence to:
An officer can require any person concerned with the use or
supply of any oil to provide a sample of that oil for test
(Hydrocarbon Oil Regulations 1973, Regulation 47) and it is a
criminal offence to obstruct an officer from obtaining an oil
sample (Customs and Excise Management Act 1979, section 16).
Once a sample has been obtained various field tests may be done
to detect the presence of rebated oil.
(This text has been withheld because of exemptions in the Freedom of Information Act 2000)
If a fuel test proves positive, i.e. if a prescribed
marker’s presence in the oil is indicated, a formal sample is
taken following the strict procedure in the
Hydrocarbon Oil Duties Act 1979, Schedule 5 and
offence action commenced.
Public Notice 75 gives details of penalties that may be imposed on anyone found to be using rebated oil as a road fuel.