Regulations and Technical Services Group

Red Diesel Use in the EU

RATS has been campaigning on the red diesel issue over a number of years. To read all our older news items on the topic, go to

In October, a ruling by the European Court of Justice banned the use of UK red diesel for leisure vessels. So far, neither the court nor the EU Commission have expressed views over any UK changeover to white diesel for propulsion, perhaps because of the current Brexit situation.

HMRC consultation on the future of red diesel

The Cruising Association urges UK boaters to respond to HMRC consultation on the future of red diesel

IIn 2018 the Court of Justice of the European Union ruled that the UK should not allow private pleasure craft to continue to use red diesel. HMRC has just issued its consultation document which outlines the proposed change to white diesel for the propulsion of powered leisure craft, including inland boats. The document contains a number of questions for owners of diesel-powered craft.

Red Diesel Use in the EU Campaign Archive

RATS has been campaigning on the red diesel issue over a number of years. This page includes all our older news items on the topic. For the most recent news and the current advice from RATS, please go to

UPDATE: 22/11/2018 - Update on Government response to EU ruling: Boating sector meets with HMRC to discuss Red Diesel

AIS checks

Following our piece last month on VHF radio checks, RATS has come across the use of National Coastwatch Institution (NCI) stations to check AIS transmissions. This seems to us to be good practice, certainly at the beginning of the season. A vessel’s AIS transceiver may use the same antenna as the VHF set or a separate one. As with VHF radios the most likely cause of any fault is the antenna or cable or the splitter (if the antenna is shared with VHF).

VHF Radio Checks – who should you call?

As the 2019 UK sailing season approaches, members are reminded that the MCA have confirmed that radio checks with HMCG should not be a first resort as it ties up the air and increases operator workload.

How could a no-deal Brexit affect cruising yachtsmen?

A list of actions for immediate consideration has been compiled by the Cruising Association's Regulatory & Technical Services (RATS) Committee

The European Commission has made it clear that, in the event of a 'no deal' scenario, it will impose full third country controls on people and goods entering the EU from the UK. (UK Government Impact Statement, 8 December).

What does this mean to cruising yachtsmen?

EU Tariffs on the import of US Yachts

Buying a boat from the United States?

Watch out for extra duty, say RATS

Did you know that for the last few months, many US-made items – including boats – brought into the EU have been subject to an extra 25% import tariff?

After Brexit: Effects on healthcare and EHIC

CA’s RATS (Regulations and Technical Services Group) is actively examining the myriad of issues that may affect CA members post-Brexit, one of which is healthcare and the EHIC. The article below, by RATS Ted Osborn, is an example of the regular articles by RATS in the CA’s Cruising magazine, and the valuable information it provides to CA members.

VHF Radio Checks - who should you call

The Cruising Association’s RATS (Regulations and Technical Services) Committee has been in discussion with the Maritime and Coastguard Agency (MCA) about the use of calls to HMCG on Channel 16 requesting radio checks. RATS have anecdotal evidence of a proliferation of such requests and that these seemed to have spread from the Solent to other areas and Falmouth in particular.

News alert from Trinity House: Differential GPS user survey

The General Lighthouse Authorities of the UK and Ireland are conducting a survey to gauge current and future user requirements for their Differential GPS service.

Differential GPS user survey

The General Lighthouse Authorities of the UK and Ireland—Trinity House, the Northern Lighthouse Board and the Commissioners of Irish Lights—operate 14 Differential GPS reference stations which provide corrections to GPS, thereby enabling greater positional accuracy and integrity in the user’s position.