The London Ambulance Service (LAS) has recently announced that it has put the very first fully electric ambulance into service. The new ambulance is based on the Ford E-Transit which uses a 68kWh battery, which is actually smaller than the new upcoming E-Transit Custom. Ford says that’ll be enough for up to 196 miles of range, however once it has been kitted out to be an ambulance that range might be a bit less.
The LAS said that the new unit went into service on New Year’s Eve, just a few weeks ago serving people in Clapham, Peckham and Brockley. The LAS also also mentioned that the new EV will help improve air quality for Londoners as well as reading costs that come from fuel and maintaining combustion vehicles.
“It’s brilliant to see London Ambulance Service leading the way with London’s first fully electric emergency ambulance. This new vehicle will enable paramedics to deliver first class care to thousands of patients whilst also improving air quality and reducing harmful, toxic emissions in the capital. I have a bold ambition for London to reach net zero carbon by 2030 and London Ambulance Service, with the largest net zero fleet of emergency vehicles in the UK, is playing its part in helping us to build better, greener London for everyone.”
Mayor of London, Sadiq Khan
Many criticisms of using EVs for anything is where they are going to charge and for how long. The LAS is working with London based hospitals to add new charging points. For example both St Thomas’ Hospital and Kings College Hospital are going to have charging points installed and the LAS now has access to 56 charging points accessible at ambulance stations.
This isn’t the first EV that the LAS is using, the service ow has 42 electric cars in use, mostly for fast response and also three electric motorbikes. LAS has said that his now has 160 ZEV vehicles in its fleet.
Going forward, the LAS is going to be expanding its use of electric ambulances from April 2024. Despite public criticisms, LAS has found that the ambulances have no problems lasting the 12 hour shifts it runs.