Electric vehicle charging itself is, generally speaking, very safe. If the charger has been installed correctly and is working properly, the chance of having any kind of safety-related problem is very small. But that only accounts for the mechanical and electrical safety issues, what about the human element?

However, when an EV is plugged in and charging, it cannot be placed into gear and driven off, the vehicle won't allow it. That could impede your ability to make a quick getaway when you're parked. But a new product called EVject is changing that. 

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EVs work differently than ICE cars during refueling/recharging

With combustion vehicles, the vehicles can be placed in gear and driven away while they are refueling (though that's a very bad idea.) This happens inadvertently on occasion and the vehicle pulls the fuel hose off the pump and drives away with it dragging along. EVs, meanwhile, have software and hardware lockouts that prevent them from driving off while still plugged in. 

The reason EVs cannot be driven off while plugged in is a built-in safety feature that prevents the driver from ripping the cable off of the charger while current is flowing through it, an act that would not only damage the charger but likely the vehicle also. 

Tesla Model 3 plugged-in at Tesla Supercharger in Toronto Canada

Tesla Model 3 plugged-in at Tesla Supercharger in Toronto Canada

Alas, enter the unintended consequences. 

Since the vehicle cannot be driven without removing the plug from the charge port, the driver cannot drive away from the scene if there's a sudden threatening event. To drive away, they would first have to exit the vehicle, walk to the charge port, unplug the vehicle, then get back inside, place it in gear, and drive off. That can take up to ten seconds, depending on where the charge port is located.

What if you don't have 10 seconds? What if you're sitting in your vehicle charging up at a DC fast charger and someone suddenly approaches the vehicle and intends to harm you? The last thing you want to do is get out of the car to unplug—but you're stuck there until you do. 

I've personally charged at places after-hours where I wasn't particularly comfortable and kept an eye out while the vehicle was charging. I can only imagine how someone less capable of defending themselves might have felt in the same situation. There have been documented cases where this has happened, and EVject has testimonials from satisfied customers; some were even in dangerous situations in the past and would have liked to have had the EVject when it happened. 

One of the problems is the location of some public charging stations. Often, the network managing the charging station cannot place the chargers in prominent positions on the property, and the chargers get installed behind buildings or in a seldom-used corner of a large parking lot where there aren't a lot of people and sometimes very poor lightning. 

EVject

EVject Testimonial

The EVject device is first plugged into the charger's connector and then plugged into the EV if the owner feels the need to escape the location quickly, all they need to do is press the unlock charge connector button and then place the vehicle in gear and drive away.

EVject is currently only selling the escape device that fits Tesla's charge port (the NACS connector). However, the company is working on both CCS1 (North America) and CCS2 (Europe) escape devices. 

The EVject uses the communication pins on the vehicle's charge port to "trick" the vehicle into thinking the connector has been removed. That allows the vehicle to be placed into gear and driven off. When that happens, the EVject breaks off into two pieces; one half remains in the vehicle's charge port, and the other remains attached to the charger's connector. The piece that remains attached to the charger's connector protects the connector as it falls to the ground. 

EVject
InsideEVs

EVject

The NACS EVject is designed to break with 110 lbs. of force on the charger's connector handle and charge port. Most EVs can support 200-300 lbs. of force on the charge port, therefore the EVject is designed to separate safely before causing any damage to the vehicle or charger equipment. 

I tested the EVject and it worked as promised, with no damage to the vehicle or the Supercharger's connector. 

Do I think every EV owner should have an EVject in their EV at all times? No, absolutely not. The use case for this is probably not a very large percentage of overall EV drivers. But it does fill a need for some drivers.

Would I want my wife to use one when she charges our EVs at public chargers? Not all of the time, but I will keep one in the car for when she's charging at a DC fast charger at night at unfamiliar locations. I'll let her decide if she wants to use it or not, but I like that it will be there for her if she feels the need to use it. 

Some may say that EVJect is fear-mongering; I think some people will say it is because they haven't encountered a situation where it would be necessary. But that doesn't mean it isn't happening. Also, once more bad actors realize that EVs are immobilized while they are charging, we may very well start to see more people confronted or attacked while they are charging. Much like we are now seeing many EV chargers vandalized with their cables being cut off. 

For the price of $299.00 less 25% when using one of the many coupon codes offered, I think the EVject is a useful device, even if the purchaser never has to use it, which we hope is the case. Let us know your thoughts in the comment section below. 

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