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A recent report released by the Department of Ecology and other state agencies concerning EV sales in WA state indicates there are fewer than 6,000 public charging stations in WA.

   Officials now say vandalism could slow the growth of building more

Information released by The Center Square indicates WA officials are concerned about what they see as a growing pattern of vandalism against EV charging stations.

As we have seen with large circle pivot irrigation systems in Eastern WA, thieves have been breaking into EV charging units searching for copper wire to recycle. The eventual goal of the state is to have EV chargers every 50 miles spanning all 2,633 miles of public road systems, other reports put the goal at 1.3 million units.

However, officials have not said specifically if the 50-mile gap is for highways or urban areas as well.

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Now, officials say growing vandalism is already costing taxpayers money, and resources are having to be used to fix existing EV units, slowing down the installation of new ones.

The Center Square says vandalism has already cost WSDOT $1.5 million since 2021.

According to The Center Square:

"Copper wire thieves have also hit other public entities, including Seattle City Lights, which between March 2023-January 2024 had eight of its 13 stations subject to theft.

 Puget Sound Energy has also experienced thefts. In March, a newly-unveiled $500,000 EV charging station in Sumner had wires stolen, making them unusable for EV drivers."

  Headlines are growing in the Puget Sound area, such as the recent vandalism at a brand-new 4-berth charging station in Sumner in March.
  Even if a charging station has not been known to be vandalized, according to a recent J.D. Power Research study, as many as 20 percent of charging stations in the US fail to provide enough energy to re-energize the vehicle. The study data was based upon tracking the number of unsuccessful visits by EV drivers to EV charging locations.

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Gallery Credit: Hannah Lang


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