News Flash

Environmental Advisory Council

Posted on: June 15, 2021

Are you ready for an electric car? Police Department says Yes!

Lansdowne EAC NEWS (1)

Every year or two, cars in Lansdowne’s vehicle fleet (primarily police cars) age out of service and are replaced.  The next additions to the fleet may very well be electric vehicles (EVs), representing a new chapter in Lansdowne Borough’s ongoing efforts to go green and, in the process, save money and improve operations.

Police officers driving EVs like the quick acceleration, instant torque and quiet.  Borough government likes not having to gas up these cars:

  • Cost per mile for electricity is half that of gasoline

  • Electric cars do not pollute the air or emit the carbon dioxide that drives climate change

Servicing is simpler and cheaper.  For example, regenerative braking (using the brakes to recharge the battery) extends the lifetime of the brakes.

All-in-all, the lifetime, total-cost-of-ownership of EVs is no higher than conventional automobiles, and in some cases is lower.

What about “range anxiety?”  Police officers do not want to have to return to the lot for recharging in the middle of a shift or emergency call.

  • Some all-electric vehicles have ranges of 100+ miles

  • Plug-in hybrids are another option.  A full battery charge provides 25-30 miles of all electric-driving.  If the officer needs to keep going, a gasoline-powered hybrid engine kicks in.

Many EV owners charge their vehicles on house current, with an ordinary (high-quality) extension cord, but this is far too slow for the Police Department (taking an hour of charging for each 2-5 miles of range).

The Borough will need to invest in charging stations. AC Level 2 charging stations add 10-50 miles of range per hour of charging.  DC fast chargers add 50-100 miles of range in only 10 minutes. Obviously, fleet decarbonization will take careful planning to make sure the Police Department gets the vehicles and infrastructure it needs.

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