The power to charge in Rakaia

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The district’s first electric vehicle charging station is running in Rakaia, and two others are planned for Ashburton and Methven over the coming months.

EA Networks has established the fast-charging station just off SH1, at the site between Salmon Tales and the Rakaia Salmon.

EA Networks commercial manager Jeremy Adamson said the location was close to toilets, a cafe and attractions in the township and would fill the charging station infrastructure gap between Christchurch and Timaru.

The charging station would offer free power “for a limited period” and as demand grew, more charging stations could be added around the district, he said.

The Ashburton electric charging station will be located on the McDonalds/Z corner and work on it will begin in the next couple of weeks.

The Methven station will be located in the parking area in front of the Methven Medical Centre and public toilets on Main Street.

All three Mid Canterbury sites will feature wind and solar powered LED lighting.

Electric vehicle technology was moving rapidly and EA Networks recognised that and supported it through investment in the new infrastructure, Mr Adamson said.

The fast-charging Rakaia station can power up some vehicles to 80 per cent of capacity in just 30 minutes.

Top-of-the-range electric cars can travel 400km when fully charged.