In the county of Surrey, the police force has decided to test out electric cars to find out how cost effective they are. Police officers in Addlestone are using the Nissan Leaf and Nissan e-NV200 van while police in Hastings in Sussex will also be taking part in the joint trial scheme.
The vehicles are 100% electric and will be kitted out to look exactly like every other car in the police force. PSCOs and neighbourhood police will use the cars when making inquiries and when they are on routine patrols but EVs will not be used for emergencies or when the police are in pursuit of a suspect.
Nissan are lending the vehicles for a three month period and during the trial, the police forces will evaluate the EVs to determine if they could prove useful in policing and as well finding out how much cheaper they are to use than traditional vehicles. Even members of the public will be asked for their opinion.
Nissan Leaf Electric Police Car Used in Europe. Image: Google UK
The Future Of Policing?
According to the head of transport for Surrey and Sussex Police, Dennis Ord, the police force has been loaned EVs before but this will be the longest trial to date. He said it would allow them to find out how useful they can be because they are quieter than traditional vehicles and more environmentally friendly.
Ord also said that it was necessary to determine how cost effective a fleet of EVs would be and how much they could reduce the fleet’s carbon emissions while still maintaining a high standard of service to the public. He admitted that parts of the fleet will need to be changed over the next few years and EVs could potentially form a major part of the police force’s day-to-day activities.
These vehicles can be driven for more than 100 miles on a single charge. According to the Police and Crime Commissioner for Surrey, Kevin Hurley, every driver in the area knows how expensive a traditional car is to run. As Surrey and Sussex Police have hundreds of vehicles in their fleet, their fuel bill is enormous. Hurley believes that by moving with the times and implementing new technologies like EVs, the police force can lower its costs while also reducing its dependence on fossil fuels.