‘Charge rage’ sweeps across UK as electric car owners ‘fight for electricity’
Motorists have grown increasingly frustrated at charging point incidents
Experts have called for an urgent code of conduct to be put in place in order to stop motorists arguing at charging points.
Drivers have reported incidents of angered motorists arguing over whose turn it is to use a charging point, and even resorting to unplugging other vehicles in order to give themselves a turn.
Electric vehicle user Jessica Fletcher spoke on Facebook about her negative experience in a supermarket car park just one week after collecting her car.
She said: “I’ve had the car a week, never had to queue for a charger but tonight I think (if the shouting bloke is to be believed) I inadvertently jumped the queue.
"There seems to be so many unwritten rules and so much anger toward those who get it wrong.
“I pulled in the car park and saw a bloke in a little smart car waiting for the chargers.
"I thought I’d done the right thing by parking up in a bay out of the way so when the smart car had a space I moved into his space.
“Only then I ended up with some bloke in a huge Audi jumping out of his car jabbing his finger and shouting at me that I’d jumped the queue - he’d been waiting and I’d just pulled up.
“I soon realised that there was no point in trying to explain that I’d been parked in a bay and just begged him to leave me alone.
“Is this what it’s like? Did my first charge lull me into a false sense of friendliness because the guys using the chargers were lovely?"
Ms Fletcher found her sentiments to be popular, with many fellow electric vehicle drivers quick to come to her support, stating rules around public charging need clarification.
Tim Alcock, from LeaseElectricCar.co.uk, told the Express that the industry should publish guidelines in order to prevent incidents of “Charge Rage”.
He continued: “Contrary to popular belief not all electric vehicle owners are tree-hugging vegans who wouldn’t hurt a fly.
"The truth is EVs are mainstream now and the drivers who use them are simply a cross section of the wider public.
“They get just as angry and frustrated as other road users. But they also have to deal with a scarcity of charging points along with the extra stress which comes from range anxiety.
“When you factor these things in, it's little wonder that we are seeing a worrying rise in reports of Charge Rage as drivers compete for a limited number of public charging points.
“Sadly the story Jessica shared on Facebook is just one of dozens of similar incidents our customers have shared with us."
Mr Alcock continued: “We need better infrastructure to keep up with demand but we also need a clear code of conduct around the use of public charging points and what is and isn’t acceptable.
"Clearly it is never acceptable to become aggressive and intimidating and what happened to Jessica sounds very frightening.
“But until the number of charging points significantly increases and a code of conduct is adopted and integrated into the Highway Code, we fear incidents of Charge Rage will only increase.”
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