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3/4 of electric buses remain parked due to chargers shortage

A truly grotesque situation with the electric buses in Greece: Only one third are in traffic because there are no chargers. Some 94 of the total 140 electric buses of the Chinese company Yutong Buus, remained parked  until the problem is solved.

The electric buses from the Chinese company Yutong Buus were recently integrated into the fleet of urban transport in Athens in an effort to modernize public transport.

However, so far, only a third of the vehicles have been thrown into the battle to serve the capital’s commuters since last Friday, with the rest of them “patiently” waiting for their …turn.

Citing sources from the Infrastructure and Transport Ministry media reported that  the number of electric buses, which will operate on the streets of Athens and Piraeus, is expected to increase gradually with the ultimate goal of having all the new buses in circulation by the end of August.

Inadequacy of the charging infrastructure

The decision to put only 46 vehicles into full operation initially was not accidental as the temporary facilities with 10-12 chargers, which have been created at five train stations (Renti, Agios Dimitrios, Platia Attikis, Roof, and Anthousa as a backup) are not sufficient for to cover the charging needs of all the buses on regular routes.

Although the initial planning provided for their total and not gradual inclusion in the program, however the block that the Court of Auditors put in the signing of the contract, worth 9.85 million euros (including VAT), with the company EYDROMOS ATE, which was awarded the project contractor for the installation of the permanent charging infrastructure, it led to a delay of about 2 months in the schedule.

It should be noted that this was followed by a request to withdraw the decision from OSY (Road Transport), which provided the necessary clarifications and data to the Audit Court, which paved the way for the contract to be signed, which provides for the permanent installation of a total of 70 90KW chargers at the organization’s four depots (except Anthousa).

However, for its part the management of OSY categorically denies that the gradual inclusion of electric buses in the schedule of regular routes was adopted due to the lack of chargers, claiming that it was chosen for reasons of smoother operation, while at the same time it does not rule out that all 140 electric buses will be circulating on the streets of Athens by June.

A similar picture prevails in the urban transport of Thessaloniki, where at the beginning of the week around 7 electric buses out of 110 procured by OASTH (Organization of Urban Transport of Thessaloniki) premiered. Although things are a little better than the competition for charging infrastructure, integration is still taking place slowly.

In any case, however, the bar has been set high for the renewal of the bus fleet, as with a series of public tenders and actions, which started in 2019, the aim is to have 1,500 new technology vehicles on the streets of Athens by 2027, media noted.

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2 comments

  1. You couldn’t make it up could you, unbelievable!!

    • Nobody_important

      Only the Greek state is capable of buying electrical machinery without the requisite connnecting cables and chargers. No normal person would buy a washing machine or suchlike without a connecting cable. And it is predictable, of course, that the Court of Auditors would promote an irrational policy — simply to make a worthless political point. Greece in a nutshell (nutcase).