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CPD makes jump to hybrid patrol cars

The Carmel Police Department has begun switching its fleet of patrol cars from regular gasoline-powered vehicles to Ford Hybrid Interceptors – a move that will save the City of Carmel about $3,000 per year for each patrol car per year (based on today’s average price of a gallon of gas in Indiana). This will provide for an estimated annual savings of nearly $400,000 once the entire 130-car fleet is replaced.

The contract for the new police cars calls for the delivery of 17 new vehicles to be delivered this year. The plan is to gradually replace the entire Operations Division fleet with the Hybrids over the next five years. The move to hybrid engines is also better on the environment thanks to a reduction in the amount of carbon dioxide released into the air.

“This is a smart move on many different levels,” said Mayor Jim Brainard, who has championed the cause of implementing green technology where it makes sense and can save money throughout the city operations.

“The thousands of dollars we save taxpayers by using this new technology will allow our police department to invest in more proactive measures to keep our crime rate among the lowest in the nation. When you combine the clean-burning energy of these hybrid engines with our network of roundabouts, we are able to take another big leap in keeping our air cleaner in Carmel.”

According to Ford, the new hybrid police vehicles can greatly reduce the amount of time a patrol car spends idling on the job. The on-board electrical equipment can be powered using the lithium-ion hybrid battery, allowing the gasoline engine to shut off – running only intermittently to charge the battery.

“This is a win–win situation for the Carmel Police Department,” said Carmel Police Chief Jim Barlow. “Officers will not see a difference in the performance and functionality of the new police vehicles, yet we will be saving fuel and lowering carbon dioxide emissions.”

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