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I recently had the opportunity to test the Ford F-150 Lightning, which did not fit in my garage. That means I had to completely depend on public charging during the test week, which also included a road trip to Indianapolis. So, I got to dig into the issue of EV charging at night and whether or not it was safe.

Let me preface this by stating I try not to do stupid things, and I strongly believe a huge part of self-defense is avoiding risky situations. That being said, I have been held up at gunpoint – on my own property – and I’ve been carjacked – at noon on a busy street. Crime often happens when you least expect it.

I’m still going to avoid risk when I can, but during my time with the Lightning, I took the risk of charging at night – with my husband in tow – to see what it would feel like.

It did not feel good.

EV charging at night

Here’s the thing about the current charging infrastructure: It isn’t like a modern-day gas station with multiple vehicles moving in and out and a store with an attendant within spitting distance. Nope, you’re often relegated to the back of a parking lot or in the parking garage of a store or bank – which is going to be closed at night.

So, when I was tethered to a machine for more than an hour, I felt a little bit like a sitting duck.

In the video below, I charged at Electrify America stations in Lafayette, Ind., and Chicago, Ill., and one certainly felt a bit safer than the other.

But here’s the thing, other than potentially having another person sitting at a charger nearby, there’s nobody around. So, if anything happens, you have no help or witnesses – except a camera that may or may not be functional.

I think you see where I’m going with this. But for my full review of charging at night, be sure to watch the video below.

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Jill Ciminillo

Jill Ciminillo is the Managing Editor for Pickup Truck + SUV Talk as well as a Chicago-based automotive writer, YouTube personality and podcast host, with her articles and videos appearing in outlets throughout the U.S. Additionally, she co-hosts a weekly radio show on car stuff for a local Chicago station. Previously, Jill has been the automotive editor for both newspaper and broadcast media conglomerates. She is also a past president for the Midwest Automotive Media Association and has the distinction of being the first female president for that organization. Jill is also currently a juror for the North American Car, Utility and Truck of the Year (NACTOY).

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