Earlier this week I posed an article advising those who’d recently moved to hurricane-prone areas to take precautions against such storms. One of the most common is to evacuate before the hurricane hits. However, for owners of plug-in electric vehicles, that may not be as easy as it sounds.
Were a hurricane barreling toward you and you needed to escape, would you want a car that could travel hundreds of miles, refill with a few containers of fuel that you carried without much hassle, and then start driving again almost immediately to get you out of the danger zone?
Or would you prefer a car that looks flashy, gets you claps from Hollywood types, can only travel a few hundred miles at most (and normally quite a bit fewer than that), and requires a complex, electricity powered refueling station, a generator, or solar panels to recharge, with that recharging taking anywhere from half an hour in the best of circumstances or hours upon hours in the worst, with the solar panels option taking forever, assuming the sun hadn’t been blotted out by the hurricane at that point?
Obviously, the combustion-powered engine is the better one in that circumstance. You can carry the fuel to keep it going after its tank has been exhausted, it has a longer range to begin with, and isn’t reliant upon highly complex infrastructure (assuming you were smart enough to fill up a few Jerry cans before fleeing).
So, in the case of a natural disaster, much as the greens might not want to admit it, a combustion-powered vehicle seems like the far, far better choice.
. . .
“… imagine a million electric cars trying to flee, stuck on major hwys going north and running out of charge … thousands dead – months bringing gas powered generators to clear major highways. This is reality.”
There’s more at the link.
Uh-huh. Recharging your EV with the power out for two to three days at least – in some areas, two to three weeks – is going to be… interesting. Sure, you can do it with a generator: but what happens when the one guy on the block who has an extra generator for his car (using another to run his house, because you can’t do both from a single unit) finds he has a dozen other EV owners lined up in his driveway, demanding that he charge their cars too? Do they have gasoline to give him, to help that happen? The odds are against it.
Also, what happens when he wants to get some sleep? If he leaves his generator running so that the EV owners can carry on charging their vehicles, ten-to-one he’ll wake up to find it long gone. If he doesn’t, and shuts it down to secure it, he’ll have a lot of unhappy neighbors calling him “selfish” and accusing him of “lack of community spirit”. (Think you won’t face such pressures? Think again. Sometimes you can’t win for losing.)
Having “all modern conveniences” is all very well, but when an anything-but-modern old-fashioned hurricane is bearing down on you, they may turn into nightmares.
Moral of the story: if you just have to have an electric vehicle, get a hybrid that can recharge itself, rather than a plug-in EV that can’t.