Transportation provider Sicamous adds second electric vehicle to its fleet – Salmon Arm Observer

The Eagle Valley Transportation Society is in the process of adding another electric vehicle to its fleet.

Malcolm Makayev, president of the Sicamous-based nonprofit group, said a new Chevrolet Bolt is on order and will allow the company to expand its service to Sicamous and area residents who need transportation for medical appointments.

It will be the second Chevy Bolt in the Eagle Valley Transportation Society (EVTS) fleet, which also includes a custom van with lowered suspension and ramp.

Makayev said acquiring two electric vehicles was a goal for EVTS when it launched in 2016.

“The goal at the time, our mission statement, was to have two electric cars to provide transportation for anyone who said they needed a ride,” Makayev said. “It’s become mostly old people, it’s not strictly old people.”

Initially, EVTS volunteers used their own vehicles to meet transportation needs in the region.

“Drivers weren’t even claiming mileage,” Makayev said.

The company started saving money and writing grants. The Liberal government at the time provided the society with $10,000, $25,000 in grants was received from the Regional District of Columbia Shuswap. Additional financial support was received from SASCU. The money was pooled, and in 2019 EVTS was able to acquire its first Chevy Bolt.

That same year, the company received $98,000 from Interior Health to provide transportation for disabled seniors requiring access to medical care. This money was used to purchase the van for $67,000. Makayev said the company was allowed to keep the remaining funds.

“That and a few other small grants here and there and we saved for another electric car,” Makayev said.

While vehicles are important, Makayev stressed that volunteers are also essential to the functioning of society.

“We have about 11 volunteers right now; out of those 11, we have about three or four doing the heavy lifting,” Makayev said. “The more people we have, the easier it is for everyone, and we are always looking for volunteers.”

For more information about the Eagle Valley Transportation Society and/or to volunteer, email or call 250-463-4733.
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