U.S. Post Office orders 9,250 electric vans and 14,000 charging stations

Originally published at: U.S. Post Office orders 9,250 electric vans and 14,000 charging stations | Boing Boing


About time! Post Sevices in every country should have done this a decade ago. It’s the perfect case for EVs- daily routes within a city then parked over night. They’ll still need gas and diesel for interstate transfers and rural areas of course, but still a huge win.

Meanwhile Canada Post has pledged to go 50% electric by… 2030…maybe. :roll_eyes: might be 2040… :roll_eyes::roll_eyes:


Turn Up Dancing GIF by Tanjareen


Even rural areas can go electric.

“The average postal route requires 24 miles of driving and nearly all of them are less than 70 miles.” – USPS Could Serve Nearly All Its Mail Routes in Electric Vehicles, a Watchdog Says – Postal Times


Why LHD for these? Is it for resale value or lower initial cost? Kind of sucks for the mail carriers.


I remember the very first time I heard about electric cars as a kid, it was a segment on Mr. Rogers showing an electric mail truck in the early 1980s. Didn’t think it would take over 40 years for the rest of the postal service to catch up.


I’m wondering if some copywriter just mixed up the terms “Left Hand Traffic (LHT)” with “Left Hand Drive (LHD).”


Nope. Per the original info from the USPS, these are commercial off-the-shelf left hand drive vehicles. This is a much smaller purchase than the larger deal they have going on for those custom vehicles from Oshkosh, and is meant as a quick fix to fill an immediate need.

You may remember that the contract that Trump’s postmaster general worked out for the Oshkosh vehicles called for only 10% of those to be electric, and I’m not sure what the latest deal with that is but Biden was trying to make some changes.

This article has more info


Progress good, however the USPS fleet is something in the neighbourhood of a quarter of a million vehicles. If these replace 9250 current vehicles then they represent a bit under 4%.

4% of such a huge fleet is still good.


Ah, in that case I guess it makes more sense (both because it’s probably harder to get a number of RHD vehicles quickly and because they might be planning to resell them once the Oshkosh order comes in).


The plan is to replace up to 75% of all their vehicles with new electric ones. This is the first movement towards that, although the majority of models are being made by Oshkosh Defense.

USPS last December committed that at least 75% of the custom-built next-generation delivery vehicles it’s buying from Oshkosh Defense in the next five years will be electric.


Had a word with one of our carriers last summer on yet another 100F-plus day. We learned that the USPS vehicles (at least the ones that service the Santa Clarita Valley) have no air conditioning. Hopefully, the new vans will address that.


Back in my freshman college days, 1981 or '82, I used to watch “Take Two” with Don Farmer and Chris Curle in the afternoon on the fledgling CNN. After airing a segment on the money-losing USPS, they asked viewers for comments on how it could save money. I wrote a snail mail response that included replacing gas powered vehicles with electric ones, among other ideas. They read my letter on air a week later. It was a surprise, so I wasn’t able to record it, or even call anyone into the room to see my fleeting moment of nerdy fame. Nice to see my idea finally taking hold, 40 years later than it should have happened.


According to Wikipedia, US Postal vans have RHD to reduce the exposure of the driver to danger when disembarking the vehicle. So they probably did mix up LFT and LHD.

  • Some special-purpose vehicles in the United States, including certain postal service trucks, garbage trucks, and parking-enforcement vehicles, are built with the driver’s seat on the right for safer and easier access to the curb. A common example is the Grumman LLV, which is used nationwide by the US Postal Service.*

In the UK, street sweeping vehicles have LHD because the driver needs to keep close to the left kerb side.


I think in the developed world (do we still say that? Is there a better alternative?) most have

This is great, especially after all the shenanigans from the Trump-appointed postmaster we’re currently stuck with.

I remember reading that the proposed gas guzzlers were exactly 1lb under the weight limit that would have required more anti-pollution controls.

Christ, what an asshole.


Ironically, for all the attempts of TFG’s administration to scuttle electric vehicles, this is his ride:


For certain values of “most” maybe. Yes, Germany and France have quite high percentages, it looks like. Australia has just begun late last year. The UK’s Royal Mail is still very early in their electrification. Canada, as I said has barely begun. Spain is about halfway between UK and Germany in their progress. I dunno how you define “the west” but I gave up sampling countries at random after that. I’d say we’re a long way from “most countries in ‘the west’ are fully EV”.


For decades, we, in the UK, used to have our milk delivered by lead-acid battery powered EV; the good old milk float. They were run by local dairies, who got forced out of business by the supermarkets. :slightly_frowning_face:


The whole, “the help rides on the outside” look is very on brand for Golfigarchs.