automotive Background

In 1984, the National Conference on Weights and Measures adopted a section (2.20.) in the Uniform Regulation for the Method of Sale of Com¬modities requiring that motor fuels con¬taining alcohol be labeled to disclose to the retail purchaser that the fuel contains alcohol. The delegates deemed this action necessary since motor vehicle manufac-turers were qualify¬ing their warranties with respect to some gasoline-alcohol blends, motor fuel users were complaining to weights and measures officials about fuel quality and vehicle performance, and the American Society for Testing and Materials (ASTM) had not yet finalized quality standards for oxy¬genated (which includes alcohol-containing) fuels. While many argued that weights and measures officials should not cross the line from quantity assurance programs to programs regulating quality, the delegates were persuaded that the issue needed im-mediate attention. A Motor Fuels Task Force was appointed in 1984 to develop mechanisms for achieving uniformity in the evalu-ation and regu¬lation of motor fuels. The Task Force developed the Uniform Motor Fuel Inspection Law (see the Uniform Laws section of this Handbook) and the Uniform Motor Fuel Regulation to accompany the Law. The recommended Law required registration and certification of motor fuel as meeting ASTM standards. The regulation defined the ASTM standards to be applied to motor fuel. In 1992 the NCWM established the Petroleum Subcommittee under the Laws and Regulations Committee. The subcommittee recommended major revisions to the Regulation that was adopted at the 80th NCWM in 1995. The scope of the regulation was expanded to include all engine fuels, petroleum products, and automotive lubricants; its title was changed accordingly; and the fuel specifications and method of sale sections were revised to address the additional products. Other changes included expansion of the definitions section and addition of sections on retail storage tanks, condemned product, registration of engine fuels designed for special use, and test methods and reproducibility limits.