The Risks of Misfuelling
How Does It Affect Me?
The most obvious instance when a fleet manager needs to be aware of the potential damage of misfuelling is if their fleet includes standard production cars – perhaps used by sales representatives to visit potential clients. Installing a full fuel dispensing system on-site to cater for these cars would certainly solve the issue, but it isn’t necessarily the most cost-effective solution.
In this case, the most effective way to remove the potential cost of misfuelling from the equation is to ensure that drivers are 100% aware of the fuel that their vehicle will use. Using signs in the car to remind whichever driver is using it is also an effective method. Further guarantees of accurate fuelling can be assured by having a strict one driver per car policy; ensuring that the same driver uses the car each time will encourage them to understand their particular car’s needs more fully.
Of course, for any fleet that is composed mainly of commercial vehicles, the whole situation changes entirely, although the danger of misfuelling remains present.
Commercial Fleets and Misfuelling
In a fleet composed primarily of commercial vehicles, petrol is a rarely-seen fuel. The vast majority of these fleets use diesel as their primary fuel, and the most commonly seen products on-site are diesel, gas oil, and Adblue. Petrol doesn’t make an appearance very often.
Diesel and gas oil are actually the same product. The only difference between the two is that diesel is taxed, whilst gas oil is duty free. This does not mean, however, that they can be used interchangeably. Gas oil, by law, cannot be used to fuel on-road vehicles. To this end, all gas oil is dyed red, in accordance with regulations, so that if a vehicle is stopped and checked the illegal use of gas oil can be detected via the residue it leaves in the engine.
The potential consequences of this sort of non-compliance can be dire – if a vehicle is discovered to have been using “red diesel”, as it is known, then prosecution is sure to follow. A tax bill is the least you may expect, and there is even the possibility that the offender will have to serve jail time. Certainly, the prospect of commercial misfuelling is not to be taken lightly.
What Can I Do About It?
Fortunately, there are some fairly simple ways to avoid the issue of misfuelling altogether. Firstly, it is vital to ensure that all drivers have a clear understanding of which fuel they should be using, and, more importantly, the consequences of using the wrong fuel. Human error is the most common cause of misfuelling, and can be avoided simply by proper education and awareness.
Secondly, it is advisable to invest in quality fuel management systems. Fuel dispensing systems like the ones we offer here at Fueltek can eliminate the possibility of misfuelling altogether. By making use of access devices which can be programmed to only allow access to the right kind of fuel for each specific vehicle, the possibility of potentially costly misfuelling is ruled out altogether.
We offer a wide range of hardware and software that can help you keep on top of your fuel management, increasing efficiency and keeping costs down. To find out more about our innovative services, get in touch using the details on our contact page, or call us now on 01254 291391.