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Electric Police Cars “Running Out Of Puff”!

July 6, 2022

By Paul Homewood

h/t Ian Magness/Dave Ward


Electric police cars in rural areas are leaving officers struggling to reach crime scenes when they ‘run out of puff’, according to one police chief.

Gloucestershire’s Police and Crime Commissioner Chris Nelson says that his police officers have difficulties reaching far flung emergencies in electric vehicles.

The force boasts the largest fleet of electric cars by percentage size, but when they run out of power officers struggle to locate charging points out in the sticks.

As a result officers are having to change vehicles without even reaching emergency sites, he claims.

Responding to questions from County Councillor Steve Robinson, from Nailsworth, the commissioner accepted the future of the force was with electric vehicles.

Asked if he backed the move to electric vehicles, he explained: ‘We’ve all got to go towards electric vehicles moving forwards,

‘We have the largest fleet by percentage size, that has brought its problems.

‘The design options available for electric vehicles for operational uses are not perhaps as advanced as I would like them to be.

‘So, let’s put it like this, I’m cautious about going any further down that road at this stage.

‘I’d like to see more operational choice so that, for instance, if an officer is out in a rural area on a road traffic accident and his lights are on, his radio is on, his heater is on, I wouldn’t want him to run out of power for all of those different facilities, simply because he or she is in an electric car.

‘I’ve heard lots of problems with officers driving around in electric vehicles having problems trying to find recharging facilities.

‘Running out of puff and then having to get another vehicle.

‘So, although the world is going down that road and I fully understand and support climate controls and green areas, it’s definitely an important thing but my first priority is to fight crime.

‘And therefore, I have to take the operational effect into account.’

To point the finger at lack of charging points misses the point- are his officers expected to spend an hour charging up, even when they have found one, while an emergency is going on down the road?

Given the size of the police cars we are typically talking about, limited range will be an issue on most days. Batteries will need recharging after just two or three hours driving, which I would guess would be a typical day for rural police.

  1. grammarschoolman permalink
    July 6, 2022 11:31 am

    Don’t worry – I’m sure the criminals they’re chasing will be happy to queue up at the same charging points alongside them!

  2. Matelot 65 permalink
    July 6, 2022 11:32 am

    Another case of the “What could go wrong button” being misplaced before contracts were signed. Who the h*ll are supposed to vet these decisions!

  3. Robert Christopher permalink
    July 6, 2022 11:42 am

    The Police have several leads, but they aren’t long enough. 🙂

    And do Charging Points require a solicitor to be available?

    • W Flood permalink
      July 6, 2022 12:53 pm

      Your first joke is excellent.

    • John Palmer permalink
      July 6, 2022 1:24 pm

      Ho, ho, ho!

  4. John Halstead permalink
    July 6, 2022 11:44 am

    The solution is easy, they need to carry a diesel genset in the boot with a flask of coffee to drink and a detective story book to read whilst it charges up.
    Seriously, I can’t think of anything good about electric cars

  5. July 6, 2022 11:44 am

    Dr. Thomas Sowell: “Reality is unavoidable”

    • tamimisledus permalink
      July 6, 2022 12:38 pm

      And yet, there are billions of people who believe that they will avoid the reality of death..

      • JapanT permalink
        July 6, 2022 12:39 pm

        Yes, but only if you give up your car, large house and eat bugs….and wear a mask.

  6. 2hmp permalink
    July 6, 2022 11:44 am

    If those at the top are so hopeless you can’t expect too much of the pen pushers. Even those experienced in the automotive industry know that Government interfering in the market is always a disaster.

  7. Martin Brumby permalink
    July 6, 2022 11:47 am

    As the great Mark Steyn says “The United Kingdom, where everything is policed, except crime.”

    Whether on the way to an emergency, disaster or crime scene, there is no excuse for police to set off without a tank full of petrol.

    Those who decided that electric cars were suitable for the police (or electric ambulances, or electric tanks for the army) should be immediately sacked.

    The men with white coats and straight-jackets should come and take them away, for their own protection.

  8. July 6, 2022 12:03 pm

    The “smart” criminals will do their work in areas where police have these vehicles

    • tamimisledus permalink
      July 6, 2022 12:40 pm

      Good one!
      smart phones, smart motorways, now smart crime
      If only there were enough smart police.

      • Indur Goklany permalink
        July 6, 2022 5:29 pm

        It’s not the police, as policy makers that are responsible for these snafus.

  9. michael kent permalink
    July 6, 2022 12:09 pm

    From reports the police often don’t visit crime scenes so an immobile vehicle is not a problem unless of course they are hurrying to investigating a ‘woke’ incident.
    But the incompetence demonstrated by this story compounds the knowledge that we have ideology rather than practical common sense at the top of the pecking order. As an ex officer it is depressing but with more academics at the top sadly, matters can only deteriorate further.

    • TerryT permalink
      July 6, 2022 1:30 pm

      When he said ‘we’ve all got to………etc….moving forward’ I switched off.

      • July 6, 2022 8:22 pm

        They can’t move forward with a flat battery! 🤣🤣🤣

  10. JapanT permalink
    July 6, 2022 12:34 pm

    Well goolly gee. Who’d a see that one comin’?

  11. Realist permalink
    July 6, 2022 12:48 pm

    Even if there were a charging point every single mile, it still doesn’t solve the basic impracticality of electric vehicles. They need recharging at least twice as often as normal petrol and diesel vehicles and each of those recharges is a matter of hours, not ten minutes.

  12. July 6, 2022 12:58 pm

    Our postman has just been given an electric van. It’s unnecessarily big, being almost twice the size of the old petrol one and has a claimed range of 140 miles on a full charge. His round covers about 80 miles a day.
    It takes four hours to charge up. As we go into winter the range will decline when he uses the lights, heater, wipers and radio. And with age, the battery will lose its charging capacity.
    To anybody of a sensible disposition it is insane to waste money on these vehicles.

    • Mikehig permalink
      July 7, 2022 10:03 am

      It may not be so insane….
      Looking at some rough numbers:

      The old van would have been doing well to hit 40 mpg under that sort of usage. That’s about £18 per day in fuel.

      An eVan would be at its most efficient in stop-start use so should do 3+ miles per kWh: let’s call it 25 kWh per day. Domestic EV tariffs are now at 7.5 pence per kWh; the PO probably does better with its buying muscle but let’s use 7.5p anyway.
      That’s about £2 per day in “fuel”.

      Assuming 6 days use per week, the PO is saving a hair under £5000 per year just in fuel costs. In addition there will be savings on maintenance, road tax, ULEZ, etc..

      At that rate it won’t take many years for the eVan to pay for itself compared to an ICE vehicle.

      [Dons flak jacket and steel helmet ready for incoming 😉 ]

      • Realist permalink
        July 7, 2022 12:34 pm

        Why is the old van petrol? It would get much better miles per gallon with diesel not to mention the engine lasting much longer.
        In either case, it is insanity to replace with the much less practical electric vehicle..
        Road tax (that doesn’t even get used for maintaning the roads) and “ULEZ” are artificial discriminatory contructs that penalise people for buying what they need rather than what politicians and other vested interests want to impose.

  13. Izzy permalink
    July 6, 2022 1:02 pm

    In rural Somerset at the recent Glastonbury festival an electric charging point was available for the use of electric car owners (£50 an hour I believe). The charging point was connected to a large diesel generator!

    • July 6, 2022 8:24 pm

      And that’s the joke of the whole fiasco; the entire electric/EV thing could not even exist without fossil fuels.

    • Crowcatcher permalink
      July 7, 2022 6:21 am

      Yes, but it was Glastonbury!!!!!

  14. Derek Wood permalink
    July 6, 2022 1:45 pm

    And somehow, no-one saw this as a problem in the first place? Ye Gods!

    • July 6, 2022 8:28 pm

      Some of us (you might say, the sceptical ones) foresaw this when an electric tractor trial was done, and the battery only lasted 1 hour. The men for us, the taxpayer, is the enormous waste of money this epic fiasco has and will cost.

  15. decnine permalink
    July 6, 2022 2:09 pm

    Another striking example of intelligence led policing.

    • July 6, 2022 8:30 pm

      Intelligence led or intelligenceless?

      • catweazle666 permalink
        July 7, 2022 4:38 pm

        “Intelligence led policing” looks like a classic oxymoron to me!

  16. July 6, 2022 2:21 pm

    In the mid 19th century, a US entrepreneur created the Pony Express where riders would change horses every 10-15 miles so they could ride at a gallop between stations crossing from Missouri to California in just 10 days. The arrival of the telegraph quickly put them out of business. Perhaps we can call this Police Hightailing on Electrics or the PHon-E express.

    • catweazle666 permalink
      July 6, 2022 3:11 pm

      As did the Romans with their cursus publicus too, of course.

  17. markl permalink
    July 6, 2022 3:38 pm

    This could be funny except it affects everyone’s safety. Removing fossil fuels as our energy source is not ready for prime time, everyone knows it, and we allow it to continue at our own peril.

  18. Ray Sanders permalink
    July 6, 2022 5:07 pm

    Bit of an aside but, I although I am registered on Facebook (under a pseudonym) I rarely go on to the site. However, I recently sent a a particular alarmist cum fraudster (William Connolley) a message which seemed to reawaken my profile. My following alert from Facebook was a “Friend” alert from non other than a certain Mr Paul Homewood.
    Far too handsome for my liking – who does this guy think he is!

  19. Indur Goklany permalink
    July 6, 2022 5:26 pm

    A good part of civilization’s disaster response is nowadays based on diesel fuel (for quick and reliable transport), emergency electrical generation, clearing debris, etc. And without these how would one effectively, rapidly and cheaply move people, food, medicine and critical humanitarian supplies before and after disasters? See:

    Click to access deaths_from_extreme_weather_1900_2010.pdf

    • JapanT permalink
      July 7, 2022 1:22 am

      They won’t. They have no desire to help those in need no matter how they came to be in need.

  20. Indur Goklany permalink
    July 6, 2022 5:35 pm

    It’s not the police, but policymakers and, indirectly, those who elect them, that are responsible for these snafus.

    Pogo: we have met the enemy and he is us!

    • Carbon 500 permalink
      July 6, 2022 5:56 pm

      Would that we had a candidate MP or local councillor who didn’t believe in all the climate junk, and was willing to stand up for their beliefs – I would assuredly vote for them.

  21. Dave Ward permalink
    July 6, 2022 6:46 pm

    At one time criminals merely needed faster cars than the police. Now they only need cars with greater range…

  22. July 6, 2022 8:18 pm

    Aren’t all those ‘operational difficulties’ comments code for “they’re crap”?

  23. Coeur de Lion permalink
    July 7, 2022 3:45 pm

    And carbon dioxide is not a problem

  24. StephenP permalink
    July 8, 2022 8:30 am

    Look up :
    The Engine That Powers the World, Diesel Engine Documentary
    It shows the futility of thinking that electricity can replace fossil fuels in any short term period, especially in power hungry machines such as container ships, earth movers and farm tractors.

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