Nissan and green energy company Ecotricity have launched a campaign to persuade the government to create and install road signs to aid electric vehicle drivers in finding charging points.
Lack of infrastructure has long been a concern of electric vehicle suppliers and buyers alike. The campaign aims to better this by adding EV-specific signage to the roads in order to provide the same directions to refuelling facilities as there is for conventionally powered vehicle drivers, as well as alerting non-EV drivers that the infrastructure is in place, should they want to make the change to an electric car.
The campaign aims to catch the attention of the Department for Transport and the Office for Low Emission Vehicles, by rallying the support of other stakeholders in the automotive and sustainability sectors. The network of over 9000 electric vehicle charging points across the country currently has no official signage; the campaign’s aim is to introduce a family of symbols and signs to clearly signpost types of chargers, such as rapid or standard chargers.
Ecotricity boss Dale Vince called time on the lack of official signage, saying: “It’s time to introduce charging point road signs in Britain. They’ll provide necessary direction for the thousands of electric car drivers in Britain, as well as increasing public awareness that the infrastructure is ready.”
Jim Wright, Nissan UK’s managing director said that the push was driven partly by customer feedback. “The feedback we get is that there are many sources of information and some are good and some aren’t,” he said. “The purpose of this is to get a commonality of approach so a customer can find out where a charging point is. It is also raising a customer’s day to day awareness of EVs.”
He said that there had not yet been any response from Government, but expected it would be on their radar. However, he said he expected that funding for installation and upkeep is something that is likely to be left to the private sector.
“Nissan has funded or helped fund hundreds of rapid chargers across the country and across Europe,” he said. “Government expenditure in this is focussed on different things and to drive the uptake of EVs in a different way.”
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