With only a handful of electric vehicle and plug-in hybrids roaming the streets these days, confrontations at public chargers over who goes first are rare. But confusion and conflict at the car-charging station are bound to become more prevalent soon. At least 18 new car and SUV models with rechargeable battery packs are coming into the U.S. market over the next three years, increasing demand for access to public chargers.
Will there be confusion? Yes, over the best way to handle the conflicts that can arise when more than one power-needy motorist at a time wants to use the parking lot's only public electric vehicle (EV) charging station.
Will there be conflict? Yes, over who goes first and whether it's OK to unplug someone else's car to get your charging session started. Expect problems over what to do about the drivers of plugless hybrids or internal-combustion engine vehicles who think that empty EV charging spots are perfect parking spaces.