Credit: Izzy Lyons – www.telegraph.co.uk – 30 May 2019
The UK has a shortage of charging points for electric cars, new figures show, as a charity warns that drivers are taking risks to charge their vehicles.
The number of electric cars on Britain’s roads have grown six times faster over the last five years than that of public charging points, according to research carried out by consumer protection charity Electrical Safety First.
The poor infrastructure has resulted in 75 per cent of electric vehicle owners admitting that they use domestic multi-socket extension leads to charge their cars from the mains in their home.
Over half confessed to using the extension lead when it’s raining, the research found.
The figures show that the rate of licensed plug-in vehicles is “drastically out-pacing” the number of charging points, the charity said.
In 2014, there were just under 26,000 electric cars registered in the UK with 3251 charging locations. But by 2018, the number of plug in vehicles grew to 186,386 – with only 6669 charging points.
Martyn Allen, technical director at Electrical Safety First, said the Government need to invest in adequate infrastructure in order to achieve their aim for all cars to zero emission by 2040.
He said: “Our research shows a direct link between a lack of electric vehicle infrastructure and vehicle owners charging dangerously.
“A modern Britain also needs to be a safe one and Electrical Safety First is urging the government and local authorities to ensure that the infrastructure is in place to support the rapid increase in numbers of electric vehicles on our roads.”
The data, obtained from the Department for Transport, also revealed the UK’s “postcode lottery” when it comes to accessibility of charging points, the charity said.
In London, there are 2.6 charging points per 10,000 residents, whilst in Wales there are 1.03.