An #EV Drive to [The #EV hole of] Essex… for the very last time [READ]

March 15th, 2015 § Comments Off on An #EV Drive to [The #EV hole of] Essex… for the very last time [READ] § permalink

You know when you plan your trim in your electric car, presumably, you Do have an electric car and you Do drive distances….

It’s the usual places, Zap-Map, Electric Highway maps, just to ensure you Do have the charging facility at your destination?

Well, i did too. And my route, from London’s Brent Cross to Braintree basically shows One RapidCharging point,ChargeYourCar Essex which i can really use – at the Destination – By ChargeYourCar. (George Yard Car Park
Pierrefitte Way, Braintree, CM7 1RB)

 

The Route

google_route

 

google_map_route Googlemaps Looks pretty straight forward, 57 odd miles a single way. So return trip (round-up) is 120 miles. That Stop in Braintree better work! I mean, there is no other way alternative. All rapid Chargers, – Ecotricity supplied (accessed 24/7) or otherwise – Thank you Nissan Dealers(accessible 9-5pm) – are not that close.

Zap-Map shows a …well, a black hole of Essex. If the Braintree RCDC is broken, im stuffed big time. So far, ChargeYourCar app is showing, (along with the website version) said that it is online and active – “Good News Everyone!”.

Zap-Map

So, we’re set for a roadtrip!

ChargeYourCar_Essex

ChargeYourCar Map

Annoying thing: there is no information about opening or closing time.

 

CYC_1 CYC_2

 

Never mind, – i’m thinking “council car park”, i’m thinking “24/7 access”. And finally, i only “am thinking…” that bit once i’m already close, 2 miles away and it’s nearly 7:30PM.

 

What really happened?

Wow, well, First of all, – and in “general”, nothing sinister. ChargeYourCar location really does exist.

I found it. its relatively easy to use. Its 43KW feed. So be prepared to wait 40 odd minutes if you arrive on near-nil.

The Bad/Cons of this Charger: First of all there is a “closing time” for this location. opening hours are 7am something  – still not sure, until 7:30pm. The closing time – just, just – is when I arrived. I was promptly flagged by a parking team and advised that i should be leaving now – its Closing Time!

Oh Joy! Not.

Personally, i still find it incredible that who-ever decides to have a rapid charger – indeed one-amazing-convenience-charger for electric car – ironically to be PAID by the travelling EV driver (yes, this charge was meant to cost me £5 – a fair amount unlike £7.50 SOME charging companies arbitrary charge EV Drivers) – oh yes, – have Closing Time.

I mean, its bad enough they are too few and far between but like “cinderella”, we – EV drivers are “allowed” to drive and charge our cars on all our #ev trips during day-time only. This was incredibly infuriating.

I went onto Council Website as well, to get FYI on this charger – who knows – maybe i missed the “opening hours bit”.

First, the news article, then i came across the Electric Car Charger [proud] announcement on Braintree Council website as well. Electric Car Charger in Braintree

Braintree Council EV News

 

 

 

 

 

Nothing. There is Zero information about any opening or closing times. That explains why ChargeYourCar charging map was blank on that as well – There is missing information.

Simples. And Whodunnit? #badReporting and #badPolicy #notImpressed and indeed #veryDissapointed

So what happened to me?

Well’ first of all “interview” the parking attendant – who eventually was very kind enough to let me stay 21 minutes to get extra 37% range  – yes, that is really poor and slow charging compared to Ecotricity’s Electric Highway – “hello 75A charging *speed*”.

They have said they have never seen an EV charging in that bay – even hearing that in 2015 – and yet somehow, i am not surprised.

I did charge just long enough as much as i was welcomed. I thanked the Parking Team, made my leave, as all the lights were switched off and multi-storey i was locked up. ouch. close car.

You know what else was close call? Well, my 61% charge apparently was not long enough to help me navigate the “hills of essex”. Nissan’s on board Navigation system classically chimed “you may not able to reach you destination” – home.

I re-routed to South Mimms – 55miles later – Thank you Ecotricity’s Electric Highway, – at least as long as it was online – yes it was.

AND – I arrived, barely, on “- – -” miles and with the warning message of “please find the nearest charging point…”

CYC Braintree charger its 2 bars! at Braintree. this is taking aaaages, 21 minutes and counting..  We're done. Thank you Ecotricity Time to leave Braintree CYC rapid charger made it to Electric Highway on South Mimms OMG i made it CYC Charger

Jesus, Moses and Abraham, but i made it, rolling in to the glowing (and working) screen of ElecHighway’s ABT Charging Point.

Horray!

I plugged in to find i had 3% of battery charge left. Wow. Close call indeed.

Made it with 3% battery charge remaining

 

Getting home, that was another 7 miles. So A StarBucks coffee break, topped up and swiftly and finally made it home.

Boy I have had my heart-pumping adrenaline for a while now. I say #ev trips can be on hold for another week. phew.

——–

Lesson to be learned? EV [especially range extending RAPID] Chargers MUST be ACCESSIBLE at ALL times. of DAY or NIGHT.

[Electric] Vehicles are a convenience, actually – a must sometimes and they are to be driven – guess what, – at convenience At ALL Times.

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