Almost 8,000 faults have been reported at car charging points across the country in a single year, new figures show.
Between November 2021 and October of this year, 7,977 faults were reported across the network of more than 2,400 charging points for electric vehicles.
But the Scottish Government stressed that most faults last for a short time, with 90% fixed within two days, some of which can be done remotely by the agency tasked with the running of the network, ChargePlace Scotland.
Scottish Tory MSP Maurice Golden – who obtained the figures through a parliamentary question to transport minister Jenny Gilruth – said the network had been “appallingly served” by the Government.
“It’s clear, and commendable, that people across Scotland want to do their bit for the environment by using electric cars,” he said.
“But those who do so are having to report faults with an infrastructure that’s been appallingly served by this SNP-Green Government.
“There is absolutely no point in ministers pushing the importance of electric vehicles – and implementing policies to discourage the use of petrol and diesel cars – if the capacity to properly charge them isn’t there.
“And these figures almost certainly understate the extent of the problem, as many road users simply won’t have the time to report the faults they encounter.
“If the Scottish Government doesn’t take immediate action to improve this, the overall objective to clean up the country’s roads will be severely jeopardised.”
A separate question from Mr Golden found charging points spent more than 800,000 hours offline during that time, although the total “uptime” across the network – when charging points were working – never dropped below 93.6% in a single month.
Responding, a spokeswoman for Transport Scotland said: “By population, Scotland has the most EV charge points outside of London and also has the most rapid charge points anywhere in the UK.
“Last year our network of over 2,400 charge points was used over 1.7 million times by EV drivers across the country.
“Our network operator has worked hard to improve reliability and we are now seeing the benefits of this approach with an overall uptime of between 95% and 97%.
“However, we want ChargePlace Scotland to be even better, which is why reliability, alongside accessibility and availability are at the heart of our draft vision for Scotland’s public electric vehicle charging network.
“Most local authorities have already removed free charging tariffs, and by working with partners to create the conditions for more private sector investment, supported through our new £60 million public EV infrastructure fund – we will continue to deliver quality public charging infrastructure which supports all of Scotland’s communities.”
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