A matter of time
States and cities are implementing regulations to phase out gas-powered OPE, among others:
- Paris, France: started in 2021, full implementation by 2025
- Toronto, Canada: from 2022
- Vancouver, Canada: from 2022
- Oslo, Norway: started in 2022
- California, USA: starting in 2024, full implementation by 2028
- New York City, USA: by 2025
- London, UK: starting in 2025
Similar measures are under consideration in several other cities or countries.
Small engines, such as those used for outdoor power equipment, emit much higher levels of pollutants than modern cars on a per-unit basis. They emit toxic pollutants that have a negative impact on human health. Carbon monoxide leads to headaches, dizziness, nausea, and even death in high concentrations. Nitrogen oxides irritate the lungs and aggravate respiratory conditions. Particulate matter can aggravate respiratory and cardiovascular conditions and has been linked to premature death. Volatile organic compounds contribute to the formation of ground-level ozone, which can irritate the eyes and worsen respiratory conditions.
In a combustion engine, high-pressure explosions make the piston move in reciprocating motion, generating vibrations. Conversely, electric motors simply spin, therefore bringing vibration virtually to zero. Extended use of vibrating tools such as gas-powered chainsaws and the like can lead to an occupational disease known as hand-arm vibration syndrome (HAVS). Consequences of HAVS include vascular disorders, nerve damage, musculoskeletal disorders, reduced grip strength and compromised dexterity. The initial symptoms are mild and easily overlooked, so that the full consequences may not be realized until the condition has progressed to a more severe and permanent stage. Regulations are in place to limit workers’ daily exposure to vibration.
Prolonged exposure to high levels of noise can have various negative consequences on both physical and mental health. The potential effects are hearing damage, tinnitus, stress, sleep disturbance, communication difficulties, and reduced productivity. Loss of concentration due to loud noise can have serious consequences for workers using chainsaws and other potentially dangerous equipment. Cutting down decibels by going gasoline-free is a viable solution to improve workers’ health altogether.
Ready for take-off?
So far, limited power has discouraged commercial landscapers from switching to battery-powered OPE. This is because conventional batteries are unable to deliver high discharge current. And if they could, they would not last long. With the Kress 8-minute CyberSystem technology, batteries are now able to supply all the current that’s needed to unleash unprecedented power, whilst extending their service life to a new level. Even better, electric motors deliver instant torque from zero RPM on, which makes them way more efficient and less prone to boggind down. In contrast, gas-powered engines need to rev up to some 3,500 RPM before achieving maximum torque. As a consequence, when the engine is slowed down by a heavy load, the torque drops dramatically.