A study by London EV Company found evidence to suggest that electric cars don’t just cut your fuel costs and help improve air quality, but they can provide significant mental health benefits.
LEVC commissioned an experiment with the University of York to monitor mental activity, along with many physical factors, in both diesel and electric taxis.
When in the electric taxi, cabbies were:
- More focused: Higher levels of beta brain wave activity were recorded, indicating higher levels of concentration
- Calmer: Heart rate was consistently less varied. The electric taxi was less noisy, with around 5dB less overall, and an increased dynamic range in comparison to the diesel.
- Happier: Driver survey data suggested the largest improvement over diesel drivers was increased happiness, followed by reduced stress and less distractions.
“This study proved hugely interesting. The drivers all reported being calmer, less stressed and happier in the electric taxi than in the old diesel model. Traditionally those feelings would correlate with more Alpha brainwaves, which are a good indicator of relaxation. But when we looked at the data, the drivers showed more Beta brain waves, an indicator of mental activity and attention.
“What does this mean? Well, the study suggests that the quieter driving environment allowed cabbies to be in a more concentrated state of mind. In other words, by removing the noisy diesel engine rumble, they are perhaps freed up to get on with driving in a more focused, but calm way. It’s a fascinating result and, given the movement towards electric commercial vehicles, shows there are even more benefits of going electric than we previously thought.” – Dr Duncan Williams, University of York
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