We all know that sinking feeling we get whenever we spot a yellow parking ticket flapping against the windshield of our parked car. For Brett Favaro, a BC resident eager to give his Chevrolet Volt a boost while shopping, the ticket wasn’t due to an illegal park job; but rather, for charging his EV at a wall outlet.
During a shopping trip at Central City mall, Favaro was unable to plug his EV into any of the charging stations on-site, as they were all occupied or out of commission. He did, however, notice an open wall socket which, he figured, should do the trick.
“There was no signage anywhere that said you couldn’t do it, so I was genuinely surprised because it doesn’t seem all that far-fetched to plug your car into a wall outlet,” said Favaro. “It’s a parking lot. It’s an outlet facing the lot. I didn’t have any reason to believe it wouldn’t be allowed, especially because it’s allowed at a lot of other places.” Technically speaking, Favaro wasn’t wrong to attempt this, as most EVs can “trickle” or slow charge at a standard three pin outlet, which usually offers several kilometres of battery range every hour.
Unfortunately, though, Favaro returned to his car to find an $80 ticket which described his incidental violation as “using outlet to charge vehicle not allowed.”
Favaro later took to social media to express his frustration, and the company that runs the lot appeased the the disgruntled EV owner by changing the ticket from a violation to a warning, as a “one-time courtesy.”
“We have 40 EV charging stations at our site designed for properly charging electric vehicles,” said Daniella Leck, the general manager of Central City mall. “The electrical wall outlets are for use by our maintenance team for things like power washers to keep our parkade clean. They are not intended or designed for electric vehicle charging.”
Lack also noted that the mall is very supportive of electric vehicles and plans to enhance signage in the area.