This morning, the UK’s Met Office published a Red Severe Weather Warning of extreme, damaging winds of up to 100 mph or more for parts of Wales and England along with torrential rain. Elsewhere in the UK, winds in excess of 70 mph are predicted, along with the kind of amounts of rain in a few days normally expected in an entire month. This is on top of the devastating floods already affecting parts of the UK, resulting in millions of pounds of damage and tens — or even hundreds — of thousands of flooded homes and the highest number of severe flood alerts the UK has ever seen.
As a consequence it’s highly likely that the next twenty-four hours — and in fact the next two days if the current forecast is accurate — will bring further flooding, high winds, blizzard conditions for some, and widespread power cuts.
So here at Transport Evolved we’ve got some really simple advice if you’re an EV owner: instead of waiting till this evening to charge your car on cheap rate, time-of-use tariffs like Economy 7, it’s worth making arrangements to charge your car now. Immediately.
Moreover, it’s worth keeping your car plugged in and charging over the next few days so that in the worst-case scenario — where your power has been cut off by strong winds and there’s a flood alert in your area — you’re not left with a half-charged car.
As we’ve detailed before, with no exhaust to worry about, electric cars are actually better suited to driving in stormy, wet weather than most petrol cars. In fact, we’re confident that you can drive through most mild flooding without any problems, but it’s always worth checking water depth before making a decision to drive through.
Of course, it’s not just about keeping your car charged up so you can get out of a storm-damaged area however. The Nissan LEAF, for example, can store 24 kilowatt-hours of electricity in its battery pack, enough for several days of emergency power.
If you’ve got a 12-volt power inverter or a USB adaptor in your EV, you’ll be able to use the power in your electric car’s battery pack to keep mobile telephones, laptop computers and rechargeable batteries for radios and torches charged from the power stored in your EV’s battery pack. All without leaving home.
Above all though, we’d like to remind everyone in the UK to stay safe, drive smart, and if you can avoid it, refrain from all travel until the storm has passed. And if you still do have power, why not read our advice on winter and poor-weather driving.
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