Electric Vehicle Manufacturers to Do Away With AM Radio Citing Safety Concerns
Due to safety concerns, some electric vehicle (EV) manufacturers are removing AM radios from their vehicles. Even though conservative talk radio is the most popular format on AM radio, it is also regarded as a crucial safety tool because it is one of the key means by which local, state, and federal authorities inform the public during emergencies and natural disasters.
According to a Wall Street Journal report, automakers like Ford and Tesla have removed the AM radio from their more recent EV models because they claim that the motors in EVs interfere with AM frequencies, causing buzzing and signal fading.
Nevertheless, ex-emergency personnel are cautioning that doing away with the AM radio could result in EV drivers missing crucial safety notifications.
In a Sunday letter to Transportation Secretary Pete Buttigieg and several congressional committees that were obtained by WSJ, seven former Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) administrators recommended that the government seek guarantees from automakers that the AM radio will remain in their vehicles.
According to FEMA, more than 75 radio stations have backup communications and generators that enable them to keep delivering news to the public in the event of an emergency.
“Should this continue, it will represent a grave threat to future local, state, and federal disaster response and relief efforts,” the letter goes.
Although drivers can use their smartphones to tune into certain radio stations, the former FEMA officials added that the signal that makes this possible isn't as dependable as AM radio during emergencies.
Ford announced last autumn that AM radio would be eliminated from later 2023 model year F-150 Lightning electrified trucks due to interference with AM radio frequencies.
“The frequencies involved in AM radio tend to be directly affected by the electromagnetic noise in EV propulsion systems,” Ford said.