Automated and Electric Vehicles Bill

Written evidence submitted by Simon Canfer (AEVB 02)

I am writing to give my views on the above consultation.

I have driven an EV for 16 months, covering almost 20,000 miles for short commuting trips and for longer journeys. My comments relate to "economy" cars and not expensive Teslas, which have many chargers already.

Clause 9 Charging - I support the proposed uniform method for accessing charging points. In addition the charger should "failsafe, to enable charging". I have experience of this at an Ecotricity charger- and found out by accident that the charger had no connection to the back office, but charged anyway.

I would add that the charger back office needs to have 24/7, 365 day support. At present some operators close out of office hours! The remote support needs to be able to enable the charger and also to unlock a locked charging port to end a charge.

Availability - operators must support chargers better than some do at present, with often less than 90% availability and taking weeks to replace broken chargers. 

The numbers of chargers at key locations, such as where major routes cross, needs to rise significantly. For example South Mimms could support 6 chargers at peak times already, (and that does not include Tesla Superchargers which are a special case and have 12 at this location).

Clause 10 Chargers at fuel retailers - I do not support this. EV users have got used to avoiding petrol and diesel stations and I for one do not miss the smell, or slippery forecourts with expensive coffee. I wouldn't patronise a charger at one unless I was in real danger of not making the next charger or getting home!

ICE'd chargers are becoming a real issue, and a special case is hybrids occupying rapid chargers that are not essential for them to use, but are essential to a driver of a pure EV to continue their journey. I suggest hybrids and PHEVs should not be allowed to use a public rapid charger at all.

October 2017


Prepared 1st November 2017