West Midlands Ambulance add EVs to fleet

West Midlands Ambulance Service has continued its decarbonisation strategy with the delivery of two fully electric operational manager response cars.

Following the arrival of a 100% electric ambulance by the Trust in October 2020, it has worked with conversion specialist VCS of Bradford, to launch two all-electric zero emissions Jaguar I-Pace ambulance response cars which will be going into operation in Birmingham imminently.

VCS has developed the all-electric Jaguar I-Pace into a fully capable response vehicle with the Trust also investing in rapid charge infrastructure to facilitate fully charging of these vehicles in less than hour.  

WMAS Chief Executive, Anthony Marsh, said: “West Midlands Ambulance Service has been at the forefront of developing ambulance technology and operating a modern fleet for the last ten years.  Working with industry specialists like VCS, we have used aircraft style technology and design to create the most hi-tech and lightest vehicles in the country.  This has continually reduced our impact on the environment by lowering our CO2 levels and ensured that patients receive the highest standards of safety and comfort. With an all-electric ambulance already in our fleet, which was launched last year, it’s hugely exciting to now have two fully electric response cars to add to our operational vehicles in Birmingham.”

Mark Kerrigan, Managing Director at VCS, said: “We have engaged in a programme with JLR, West Midlands Ambulance Service Fleet and Operational user teams to produce a bespoke fit for purpose design to the very capable zero emission platform in the Jaguar I-Pace. As always the team at WMAS have pushed the innovation envelope which has resulted in the delivery of what we feel is a best in class fully capable zero emission response car.”

Tony Page, General Manager for Fleet and Facilities Management at WMAS, said: “It’s great to see the delivery of this latest innovation in our drive to deliver a zero-emission fleet. This new edition follows the successful integration of the fully electric emergency ambulance last year which is performing well and receiving good feedback from operational colleagues as I am sure the new I-Pace cars will too. This is another good example of robust and focussed collaboration between the vehicle converter VCS, the vehicle manufacturer JLR and WMAS operational and fleet staff. I would like to thank Rebecca Flintason, James Williams and Martin Corley for their valued input through the design process.  Work is now in progress to deliver two Zero Emission PTS vehicles.”

WMAS Director of Strategic Operations and Digital Integration, Craig Cooke, added: “These new Jaguar I-Pace cars will be utilised every single day by the tactical operational commander teams responding in the UK’s second city. These vehicles are highly capable and will allow the Trust to deliver the best Ambulance Response Service in the UK, whilst also operating zero emission vehicles for these 24/7 commanders.  Alongside the vehicles, considerable investment has been made in the charging infrastructure on the operational hubs in Birmingham to facilitate very fast charging of both the zero-emission ambulance launched last year and these two new response cars.  WMAS is fully committed to driving down the carbon footprint of our operations and these new vehicles alongside other developments in the pipeline will also help WMAS contribute to the Commonwealth Games 2022 commitment to reduced carbon footprint.”

image courtesy of West Midlands Ambulance Service

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