Road Warrior is beginning to hear about the unusual “courtesy” electric vehicle drivers afford each other when it comes time to visit a charging station. Here’s what one reader had to say:
“It is not a courtesy but a curse. Some EV drivers unplug an unattended car and then plug in their own. This has happened to me twice. It’s a big annoyance and hard to control or police.
“My wife was so upset that someone did this to us that she unplugged the other vehicle as we left. Not a good response, but this is an emerging issue, especially when you want to plug in at a parking lot and the charging stations are all in use. It is easy to tell if a car is charging or has stopped charging; I suspect most are still charging when they’re unplugged.”
It’s a common complaint, so common that Plugincars.com has developed an etiquette guide that includes a few obvious rules along with a few eye-openers.
For example, it’s never acceptable for a gas powered car to park in an EV charging spot, although it happens enough to earn a nickname (spots are ICEd if they’re blocked by an internal combustion engine).
More interesting is the discussion about hierarchy of need. If you just want to top off the tank of your hybrid vehicle, is it more important to let the battery-powered Leaf have the plug-in spot? Some say it’s more polite to recharge only when you need it, along with leaving a note saying when you’ll be done or, if you’re the one waiting in line, leaving a note on the windshield asking to be plugged in when their battery is full.