Welch’s Transport has installed a new state-of-the-art supercharger at its headquarters which will be open to use by other operators as well as the haulier’s own fleet.
Announcing the installation of the EVD-150 DC charging unit, director Chris Welch called on the government to speed up the roll out of charging infrastructure and take action to cut pricey charging costs.
The supercharger has been installed ahead of the arrival of the Cambridgeshire company’s first fully electric 19-tonne rigid and Welch’s believes it is the first openly accessible HGV charging point of its kind in the UK.
The new Renault E-tech D Wide Electric 19-tonner, which is due for delivery at the end of this month, will be used to transport general haulage, palleted and hazardous goods.
Welch’s Transport is now on the hunt for operators that want to use the rapid charging unit - which is designed for commercial charging - for their own EV fleets. The haulier is planning to hold an open day once it takes delivery of the Renault 19-tonner.
Welch’s Transport worked with the Energy Saving Trust to create a detailed decarbonisation report, ahead of the installation of the supercharger.
The company also conducted significant preparation work to ensure the grid could handle the power of the new supercharger.
The Energy Saving Trust report recommended an infrastructure development strategy in line with Welch’s plans for fleet electrification and found that there may be enough power within the grid connection for the whole fleet to be battery electric.
It said that, with on-site infrastructure, a fully battery electric rigid fleet could be accommodated for overnight charging between the two existing grid connections at the Duxford depot, with minimal work beyond installing AC charge points for each vehicle.
The report concluded that an investment in charging infrastructure will enable rapid decarbonisation at Welch’s Transport.
It is the first readily available HGV charging point in Cambridgeshire and could be the first openly accessible HGV charging point of its kind in the UK.
Chris Welch, director of Welch’s Transport, said: “Seeing the installation of our new supercharger has brought to life our vision for a greener future.
“As well as being a Cambridgeshire first, the charger represents our plans to help the City Council and businesses in the city centre realise and achieve their Net Zero ambitions.
“Presently, a shortage in charging infrastructure and expensive charging costs, are making it exceedingly difficult for freight and haulage companies to make the switch to EVs.
“More needs to be done to provide the required charging points, so collectively we can make a change.
“In January motoring groups banded together to issue a stark message to ministers, urging more to be done to provide the infrastructure required to make the switch.
“Until infrastructure across the country catches up, we are focussing our sustainability targets on delivering cleaner last-mile deliveries in Cambridge.
“The combination of our knowledgeable local drivers, new electric HGV and now, new high-tech supercharger, means we are well positioned to do exactly that.”
Operators interested in using Welch transport’s supercharger should email: firstname.lastname@example.org