A new survey of electric vehicle drivers has found issues around accessibility for users with disabilities.
Zap-Map, the UK’s leading EV mapping service, polled 2,200 EV drivers on their experiences of using Britain’s charging network. The results found that one third of people with disabilities surveyed had difficulties locating a suitable charger that could meet their needs, with one in seven noting their very specific challenges with the weight of charging cables.
The survey also revealed that some users experienced difficulties with the force required to attach the connector, the lack of dropped kerbs around charge points, and unsuitable parking arrangements.
It is key that chargers are accessible to everyone if the country wants to move towards the all-electric revolution, according to Dr. Ben Lane, Zap-Map’s CTO.
“The UK is witnessing the start of an electric vehicle revolution with millions of zero-emission cars set to appear on our roads in the near future,” he said. “The new charging infrastructure to serve those EVs is being built now and we can’t afford to leave anyone behind. Businesses and charge point operators need to focus more effort on improving accessibility and designing charge points which will benefit everyone”
When building a wide and reliable infrastructure it is necessary to think about creating a product that can be used by the entire population without exclusion, according to Catherine Marris, Innovation Lead at Motability.
“As we approach what will be a transformative energy transition in the UK, there is a robust social and commercial case for ensuring that EV charging infrastructure is accessible for disabled people,” she said. “If we want to work towards a society and economy that is inclusive for all, then accessibility must be a priority.”
We recently reported that Zap-Map has also launched Zap-Pay, a new service that enables EV drivers to use a single app to pay for charging across different networks.