Northern Ireland Police Force Adopts Electric Police Car

New York Police improves with electric car fleet
New York Police improves with electric car fleet

The Police Service of Northern Ireland (PSNI) has confirmed delivery of a Vauxhall Ampera as part of a move towards a more environmentally friendly police service. The electric vehicle is on loan for six weeks as part of a pilot scheme which could see the Police Service of Northern Ireland adopt more electric cars in due course.

How is the Vauxhall Ampera performing?

Despite the fact that many people seem to have reservations about electric vehicles, the feedback from police officers in the PSNI has been very positive, with many impressed by the relatively quiet engine and efficiency of the vehicle. This is yet another way for the electric car industry to achieve more visibility and interact with the general public, which will also showcase the ever improving technology associated with electric cars.

While this particular vehicle is a hybrid, offering electric and petrol assisted transport, the electric motor is able to achieve a 60 mile journey capacity on a full charge. As and when the police officers require further journey capacity they simply switch to the petrol engine offering the perfect hybrid for police services.

Should all public sectors adopt electric vehicles?

This move by the Police Service of Northern Ireland has been welcomed by the electric car industry and is indeed yet another example of public bodies around the world adopting this new technology. The fact is that governments across the globe have committed themselves to various emission reductions in the short, medium and longer term and one of the best ways to achieve this, and perhaps most visible, is via electric vehicles in the public sector.

Quote from ElectricForum.com : "The Police Service of Northern Ireland (PSNI) has this week confirmed it is using a Vauxhall Ampera hybrid and initial feedback has been very encouraging."

It would be foolish to suggest a blanket adoption of electric vehicles across all public sectors around the world, but this slowly, slowly approach, is certainly beginning to pay dividends. The more people who experience the new technology of the electric car industry, the more impressed they become and the more likely they will be to adopt this in their personal life. There is also the chance that the more visible public sector vehicles become, such as police cars, the more accepted they will be by the general public.

What next?

While there has been no commitment to introducing further electric vehicles in police forces across the UK, the fact that feedback from officers on the ground with regards to the Vauxhall Ampera has been positive is obviously a good start. It does seem almost inevitable that we will see more electric powered police cars in the short, medium and longer term and indeed the UK government has already committed to increasing its use of more efficient transport systems in the future.

The fact that a police car which is electric powered is able to carry out the day-to-day duties of the Police Service of Northern Ireland will surprise many people. The fact that this vehicle is able to keep up with high-speed chases, accommodate the rigourous day-to-day services associated with police cars and ultimately live to fight another day, should not be ignored.