HOUSING bosses are boosting their green credentials with the launch of a new electric car.
Housing Hartlepool, part of the Vela Group, is trialling an electric car for its Homecall Service over the next six months.
The housing association manages 7,000 properties in Hartlepool and the surrounding villages after it took control of Hartlepool Borough Council’s housing stock in 2004.
Bosses say they are “committed to sustainability” and are always exploring ways to be more green friendly.
Other features have included installing solar electric panels, solar water panels, low energy light fittings and rain water harvesting equipment on their properties.
Now the focus is on the vehicle fleet.
Housing Hartlepool’s Homecall Service carries out routine monitoring and reacts to emergency call-outs to elderly and vulnerable residents.
The trial will allow the community monitoring team to assess the vehicle to see whether it will be prove cost effective to add to its fleet.
The blue Peugeot iOn is 100 per cent electric and can record the mileage and the electricity used to charge the car.
Becky Ferry, environmental sustainability co-ordinator for the Vela Group, said: “We continually strive to increase awareness and understanding of environmental issues and to reduce Housing Hartlepool’s carbon footprint.
“It also is anticipated that the electric vehicle will be much more cost effective than a conventional vehicle.
“We are looking to replace one of the diesel run vans, which are currently used for routine monitoring and emergency call-outs, with an electric vehicle and to potentially provide these vehicles as works pool cars for the company in the future.”
The car is being trialled through the Switch EV project which is funded by the Technology Strategy Board’s ultra low carbon vehicle demonstrator program.
It takes between seven and eight hours to fully charge the car and once charged it can drive for 90 miles.