Weprin Calls for TLC to Consider Using Electric Cars

Bill would allow commission to approve vehicles as medallion taxicabs as long as they meet safety criteria.

Councilman Mark Weprin has introduced a bill that would allow the city's Taxi and Limousine Commission to approve electric vehicles for use as long as they meet safety criteria.

Weprin, D-Oakland Gardens, and Councilman James Vacca, D-Bronx, said they are pushing the legislation to encourage the TLC to use electric cars, which have zero emissions.

"Increasing the use of electric vehicles will reduce carbon emissions, protect the environment and make New York a more sustainable city for future generations," Weprin said.

Under the bill, the TLC would be able to approve the cars for medallion taxicabs as long as they met relevant safety criteria. The commission currently approves certain hybrid vehicles.

"A dense city like New York is the perfect market for electric vehicles," Vacca said. "Although electric vehicles represent only a tiny portion of car users, the growth potential is enormous and the city should be looking at any viable way to encourage electric vehicles use."

Patch wants to know. Do you agree with the councilmen that the city should consider using more electric cars for medallion taxicabs? Post your comment in the section below.

Harriet Brown August 25, 2012 at 05:20 PM
I think it should be a pilot project. We have to see how it would work.
Phil Konigsberg August 25, 2012 at 05:38 PM
I support this initiative as long as there are sufficient places that the cabs can be conveniently and efficiently recharge their batteries. Environmentally speaking, I think it is a no-brainer. Our air pollution would be positively impacted. I would be interested in hearing from others on what the negative effects could be.
Charles Manna August 25, 2012 at 08:28 PM
busses, taxies and limos should all be phased into electric power. It would go a long way to meet clean air standards and would give the general public a chance to experience the clean, quiet ride.
max August 26, 2012 at 01:24 AM
It is a great idea but not practical as of this time. A fully electric vehicle does not have sufficient range when you consider how much time is spent in traffic. Even if there were enough charging stations the charge time is to slow to make it cost effective for the driver. There is one company in Europe at the present time that is going to do battery exchanges. You drive in to a station with a low battery and in a few minutes a fully charged one is installed. Weprin has stated the obvious to get some publicity put the present technology is not yet practical.
Paul Scott August 27, 2012 at 01:28 AM
I disagree with Max. Both the Nissan LEAF and Mitsubishi iMiEV can be fast charged within 30 minutes. What are needed are fast chargers installed at locations where cab drivers might take a lunch break, or where they have to wait for fares. Also, when a cab is stuck in traffic, there is no energy being used by the EV. One big problem is that because of the limited range, cab drivers will need to learn to hypermile. Everyone should be hypermiling regardless of whether you drive an EV or ICE.


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