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Police departments adding electric vehicles to fleets

As electric vehicles become more popular, local police departments are adding them to their fleets

MAINE, USA — Some police departments in our state are trying out clean energy options by adding electric and hybrid vehicles to their fleet.

"We have a fleet of four marked vehicles so half our fleet now is hybrid," Cumberland Police Chief Charles Rumsey said.

The Cumberland Police Department has been replacing its vehicles with hybrids for some time now.

"We anticipate moving our fleet completely to hybrid as we replace our cars," he added.

The department also recently added an electric vehicle to its fleet through an Efficiency Maine rebate program.

As of now, it isn't marked and is being used for more administrative purposes, but Chief Rumsey said an electric marked cruiser could be coming soon.

"I think there's actually some testing going on now with some of the major car manufacturers that are looking to make police package electric vehicles," he said.

The problem right now is that the gadgets inside police cruisers use a lot of electricity for the lights, computers, and radios.

"They're still trying to develop a car that has the right battery size that can accommodate all of those electronics," Amalia Siegel, Efficiency Maine EV Program Manager said.

Other departments, like Bangor, have introduced electric vehicles with the help of Efficiency Maine. The addition is part of the city's effort to become more sustainable. 

Chief Rumsey said he expects that eventually, departments will be able to use electronic vehicles as patrol cruisers in the next few years.

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