A group of teenagers who reportedly threatened a Post Office worker with a gun after he refused to sell them alcohol are being hunted by police. The six youths - thought to be aged around 16 to 18 - entered the shop in Plumstead High Street about 5.20 pm on Saturday, September the 10th, and asked the shopkeeper for alcohol. When he refused to sell it to them, one of the youths produced a handgun and threatened the shop keeper with it. The group then left the Post Office and headed towards Plumstead Railway Station. They are wanted by the Police for conspiracy to commit armed robbery. A Metropolitan Police spokesman said: “The main suspect, seen to be carrying the hand gun is described as a white male, wearing a dark grey tracksuit, a black side-bag, a black beanie and black and white trainers. He is of a slim build.” The force on Tuesday issued CCTV stills (shown above - click on them to see larger images) of six individuals that they want to identify, and are appealing for help from the public. Anyone with information is asked to call 101 quoting 5398/10Sep. To remain anonymous contact the independent charity Crimestoppers on 0800 555 111.
Whilst crossing the car park outside of Morrison’s in Erith last week, I saw a couple of motorists having a very noisy row. It appeared that they had some kind of disagreement over the usage of the electric vehicle charging unit located at the Eastern end of the supermarket. What surprised me was that the unit has the capacity to charge two vehicles at the same time, and there were only two vehicles involved in the dispute. I did not hang around to find out the details of the somewhat heated argument, but it did prompt me to think – do we need to have some kind of etiquette in respect of charging electric vehicles? After doing some online research, it would appear that a number of etiquette guides have been compiled – mainly in the USA, but it would seem that the basic principles are applicable world – wide. The most widely referenced guide to EV charging uses the following guidelines:- 1. Plug-in vehicles only! Unless your car can make use of a charging point then this bay is not for you. Parking an “Internal Combustion Engined” (ICE) car in a charging bay is known as “ICE'ing”. It will win no one any friends, nor admiration. 2. Charging only! Even if it is a preferable space, you should only park in the bay by the EV charge point if you are going to charge. When you are at a public charge point it’s also considerate to move once you have completed charging to allow another driver use of the charge point. Of course there are some charge points where this isn’t possible, e.g. at airports or train stations - so use your initiative. 3. As soon as you have charged as much as you need, unplug and vacate the bay straight away. The rapid charger is not for parking at. It’s for charging and moving on from. This is one of the reasons for The Rapid Charge Paradox (“The faster the charger, the longer you spend watching your car charge”) - you can’t go far from a rapid charger while using it. While inconvenient this is about being considerate to other users. And increasingly drivers who leave their car charged and plugged in will be hit with “idle fees” for overstaying. Not only is it kind to head off before your car has rapid charged to 100%, it is an efficient use of time. The last 10% of your battery typically charges quite slowly, so it is quicker to get going when you reach circa 85% either to charge at the next en route rapid charger, or, better still, to charge at your destination. Charge point pointers:- It is better to be philosophical about other people abusing the commandments. You will quickly forget about the annoyance. You will not soon forget about a conviction for criminal damage. Try to match rapid charge events with similar length activities - coffee in a local cafe, a similarly timed walk, use of facilities. Watching your car charge is no one’s idea of fun. Try not to use the last possible en route rapid charger, ideally use the one before the penultimate. This gives you a safety buffer should it be occupied or out of service, as you have two more to try ahead of you. Try to get into the habit of topping up at your destination whenever you can. Whilst this feels alien for those used to refuelling, it reduces your reliance on (usually) expensive and inconvenient rapid charging and means charging happens when you are busy doing other things, thus minimising your time spent waiting to effectively nil.