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Ahwatukee Fry’s installs electric-car chargers

Shoppers at Fry’s Food Store on Ray Road in Ahwatukee can now check one more thing off their list when they go to the store: recharging their electric vehicle.

Two Blink electric-vehicle chargers have been installed at the grocery, 3616 E. Ray Road, Fry’s spokeswoman JoEllen Lynn said. It is the second store to have Blink EVCs installed in the parking lot through expansion of a partnership between manufacturer ECOtality Inc., and the Kroger Co., the parent of Fry’s, Lynn said.

“We like to always say we have everything under one roof, so this is another great service,” Lynn said.

Twenty-eight Blink EVCs are expected to be installed by the beginning of September at Fry’s in Phoenix, Chandler, Tempe, Gilbert, Scottsdale, Mesa and Glendale, said Brian Koontz, national account sales manager for ECOtality.

“We understand that EV drivers are looking for places they can come to and plug in where they frequently go,” Koontz said. “What better place than a grocery-store retailer for people to plug in while they shop?”

The two chargers at Fry’s in Ahwatukee are Blink Pedestal models, which give a vehicle a 20 to 30 percent charge in about 30 to 40 minutes, Lynn said. The EVCs are available 24 hours a day, seven days a week.

To use a charger, a Blink InCard or a guest code is required. The EVCs do not accept cash.

A Blink InCard can be obtained by registering for membership on the Blink website and requesting the card, Lynn said. After a Blink InCard is received in the mail, it can be activated on the Blink website. The Blink InCard charges the credit or debit card that is registered to the membership account, Koontz said.

Those who do not have a Blink InCard can recharge a vehicle as a Blink guest by calling the 24/7 operation center or visiting the Blink website. After providing debit or credit-card information, a guest code will be given to activate the charger, said Davin Jader, national account relationship manager for ECOtality. Smartphone users can scan the QR code on the front of the EVCs to be taken to the website to register for a guest code on their phones, Koontz said.

The fee to charge a vehicle at a Blink Pedestal charger is $1 with a Blink membership and $2 with a debit or credit card, Lynn said.
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