Red diesel approval

NORTHUMBERLAND farmers can use red diesel in their tractors to help grit and clear snow from public roads in extreme weather, it has been confirmed.

Under normal rules, any vehicle that is being used to clear these areas using a snow plough or similar device is entitled to use red diesel.

However, only vehicles that are constructed or adapted and used solely for spreading material on roads to deal with frost, ice and snow can undertake gritting work while using the dyed gas oil.

But HM Revenue and Customs has said that because farmers play a vital role in helping to keep rural roads clear, it will adopt a pragmatic approach to the rules. This means that agricultural tractors on public roads clearing snow or gritting to provide access to schools, hospitals, a remote dwelling, or communities cut off by ice and snow can continue to use red diesel.

For more information, telephone the Helpline on 0845 010 9000.