The UK is hoping to encourage a more inclusive, reliable electric vehicle (EV) charging network, with the Government and charity sector coming together to set accessibility standards, Transport Minister Rachel Maclean has announced today (30 June).
In partnership with national disability charity Motability, the Department for Transport has commissioned the British Standards Institute (BSI) to develop accessibility standards for EV chargepoints across the country. These standards will provide industry with guidance and drivers with a new clear definition of ‘fully accessible’, ‘partially accessible’ and ‘not accessible’ public EV chargepoints.
The design of public chargepoints is already carefully considered by operators. However consistent standards are crucial for drivers to easily identify which chargepoints are suitable for their needs. This could range from adequate space between bollards, charging units being of a height suitable for wheelchair users, size of the parking bay and the kerb height.
- Standards will provide industry with guidance on how to make individual chargepoints more accessible by summer 2022
- Guidance will consider aspects such as kerb height, adequate space between bollards and chargepoints being of a height suitable for wheelchair users
- Partnership with British Standards Institute (BSI) and Motability will see chargepoints that are accessible for all as we accelerate towards a zero-emission future
Says Transport Minister Rachel Maclean:
“With sales of EVs increasing and the Government’s net-zero ambitions accelerating, I want to make it as easy as possible for EV drivers to charge up their vehicles at public chargepoints right across the UK, regardless of their mobility.
“We are taking action to provide accessibility guidance to both operators and drivers, to make sure that the transition to zero-emission driving will benefit everyone in society as we build back better.”
Adds Barry Le Grys MBE, Chief Executive Officer at Motability:
“There is a risk that disabled people are left behind as the UK’s transition to electric vehicles approaches, and Motability wants to ensure that this does not happen. We welcome the interest from Government in our research on electric vehicle charging and accessibility and we are excited about our partnership with the Office of Zero Emissions Vehicles (OZEV) to further this work.
“We look forward to working together to create world-leading accessibility standards and to support the UK’s commitment to achieving zero emissions. Motability looks forward to a future where electric vehicle charging is inclusive for all.”
Motability is also working with Designability, a charity which creates products to enable disabled people to live with greater independence, to engage with disabled drivers and identify their requirements for accessible charging.