Penalty for service station supplying non-compliant diesel

Department of the Environment

Media release
16 December 2013

A service station in Victoria has been ordered by the Federal Court to pay a penalty of $33,000 and to stop supplying diesel that does not comply with the Fuel Quality Standards Act 2000.

The penalty was awarded after the Department of the Environment, who administer the Fuel Quality Standards Act 2000, found that diesel supplied had a flash point temperature lower than 61.5°C. The Department took this action after Fairglen Pty Ltd continued to supply diesel with a low flash point despite being provided with a written warning and additional education.

In addition to the penalty, Liberty Braybrook service station in Braybrook VIC, operated by Fairglen Pty Ltd, had an injunction imposed for two years to restrain the supply of diesel that does not comply with the Fuel Standard (Automotive Diesel) Determination 2001.

The service station further entered into an Enforceable Undertaking which requires regular laboratory testing of diesel being supplied and to provide results to the Australian Government Department of the Environment.

Flash point determines the temperature at which a fuel vapour will ignite in the presence of oxygen and an ignition source. Low flash point may result in pre‑ignition and engine run‑on causing poor fuel combustion and an increase in pollution. It can also lead to a fire or an explosion that may result in harm or death.

The Australian Government runs a national fuel sampling programme to monitor the quality of fuel sold in Australia. Fuels are sampled by authorised inspectors throughout the supply chain, including at service stations. Suppliers of non‑compliant fuel may be prosecuted and/or required by a Court Order to stop supplying non‑compliant fuel.