Dyed diesel is fuel with red dye added to show there are no federal or state fuel taxes paid. Other industry names for dyed diesel are: marked fuel, farm fuel, “red dyed” diesel.
Common uses of dyed diesel are non-highway farming equipment, construction equipment, generators, and marine vessels.
Dyed diesel users must have a license. This license allows approved government agencies and organizations to use dyed special fuel (diesel or biodiesel) when operating licensed motor vehicles on public roadways. The Internal Revenue Services (IRS) approved users are:
It’s illegal to use dyed diesel in vehicles that drive on Washington State public roadways or highways. Examples of illegal use include:
Each violation will result in a fine of $10/gallon or $1,000, whichever is greater.
The Fuel Tax Evasion Unit is a partnership between us and the Washington State Patrol (WSP). The unit investigates fuel tax evasion, captures data, and takes phone calls from the tip line, 800-497-FUEL (800.497.3835).
WSP conducts thousands of “dips” to check fuel tanks for dyed fuel and determine if the operator is using the fuel illegally. If a violation occurs, the operator will receive a fine, which may appear on his or her record as a felony or misdemeanor.
You can report fuel evasion by:
You may remain anonymous. If you leave your name and phone number, a task force member will call you back. All information you give will be investigated and remain confidential.