Electric taxi charging enforcement has been called in to question as the number of Penalty Charge Notices (PCN) issued has been revealed.
According to the London Mayor, Sadiq Khan, only 48 PCN’s have been issued to vehicles blocking access to the taxi industry’s vital E-taxi charging bays on Transport for London’s (TfL) road network.
Those 48 PCN’s issued are up to October 2019. The first keys to an electric taxi were handed to the taxi driving community 22 months prior to that date in January 2018 and there are currently 3,153 zero emission capable taxis registered in the capital.
According to industry representatives taxi drivers are experiencing ‘daily abuse’ due to a lack of enforcement on the designated electric taxi charge points.
Earlier this year, Grant Davis, Chairman of the London Cab Driver Club (LCDC), commented on footage showing the abuse one driver faced when he asked a delivery van to move from a E-taxi bay.
Grant said: “Unfortunately we see on a daily basis licensed taxi drivers face abuse and physical threats with vans and lorries parking up on our conventional taxi ranks, but to see a driver who has made the massive commitment in investing in a LEVC taxi making London a greener and cleaner place facing both verbal abuse and as we see a physical assault is awful.
He added: “Until Transport for London take parking on ranks by non taxi vehicles seriously, this will unfortunately continue.”
Access to charging bays is thought to be a vital selling point for drivers, especially those without home charging access. Data from TfL revealed 44% of black cab drivers will never have the capability to charge their work vehicle directly from their house.
There are currently just over 200 rapid chargers in London. TfL’s Rapid Charging Infrastructure project remains committed to installing 300 rapid charge points by the end of 2020 to service the Mayor’s targeted 9,000 zero-emission taxis before the start of 2021.