Whether you’re a disabled user, wheelchair bound, a parent carrying a child, or just on your way to a business meeting with briefcase, papers and mobile phone, parking and plugging in your electric car needs to be a simple and stress-free operation.

Alex Bamberg, Sales Director, ChargePoint Services Ltd, said.  “It’s vital that we make refueling plug in vehicles as easy as possible for motorists making the step change to electric vehicles.  Changing the long established tradition of a five or 10 minute visit to a petrol station en route to a destination, rather than refueling on arrival at the office, at home or leisure destination, will be a major cultural change for most drivers.  Disabled motorists however are often familiar with the routines of running an electric mobility vehicle, making the transformation from ICE vehicles to electric vehicles a less significant step.”

Disabled motorists’ struggle with refuelling their vehicle is nothing new.  When the new “chip & pin” technology became available in 2005, drivers could no longer pay on the forecourt unless the old method of a signature, was accepted by the filling station.  Although many drivers carry an infrared transmitter which is designed to alert the attendant that assistance is required, refuelling remains a frustration to many disabled drivers.

Refuelling an electric vehicle could be equally difficult for a disabled driver, but by minimising the dexterity needed to operate the charge point by providing single handed operation, together with the fact there is no financial transaction involved at the point of fuelling, the procedure is substantially easier with an electric car.

John Killick, Hon. Secretary, Disabled Motorists Federation, said. “There are around 12 million registered disabled people in the UK, and according to recent government figures, just over 3 million Blue Badges in circulation.  Although the price of an electric car initially will be prohibitive to many disabled drivers, when prices begin to decrease, I expect such vehicles to become very popular in the disabled market.  Refuelling an electric car could prove to be a hurdle, considerations such as equipment height and positioning to allow for easy access should all be included in design.  ChargePoint Services, have ensured that their EV charge points require just single handed operation and are extremely simple to use, this alone will vastly assist disabled motorists make the change in adopting these greener vehicles.”

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