Changes to the law which would allow tractors to use ‘red diesel’ for gritting roads have been published by HM Revenue & Customs (HMRC).
Currently, only purpose built or adapted gritters may use red diesel when they are being used to grit roads.
HMRC welcomes views on the consultation document ‘Use of rebated fuel for gritting in rural areas’ from anyone who would be affected by any changes or is involved in the provision of gritting services or equipment, including councils, agencies and other bodies.
Steven Clarke, Oils Policy team, HMRC said: “In recent winters during extreme weather we have temporarily allowed tractors and other agricultural vehicles gritting rural roads to use red diesel. We are now considering whether we need to change the law to formalise this and make it permanent”.
South Ayrshire Council’s Head of Planning and Enterprise, Mike Newell, said: “We warmly welcome any initiative or consultation aimed at helping us and our local communities, keep roads open and pathways clear from winter snow and ice, especially in rural areas such as ours.”
The consultation document ‘Use of rebated fuel for gritting in rural areas’ can be found on the ‘What’s New’ page of the HMRC website (12 July) at: http://www.hmrc.gov.uk/news/index.htm
Views must be sent to HMRC by 5 October 2012.