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AG coalition asks EV manufacturers to continue installing AM radios

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Sixteen states attorneys have asked members of two manufacturers groups to continue to include AM radios in new electric vehicles.

In a letter led by Florida Attorney General Ashley Moody and signed by 15 other attorneys general, Moody asked the Electric Drive Transportation Association and the Zero Emission Transportation Association to continue including AM radios despite reported interference caused by electrical equipment, which hasn’t prevented some manufacturers from continuing AM radio production.

“These decisions suggest that the real problem is not signal interference but a failure of certain automobile manufacturers to appreciate the importance of AM radio,” Moody wrote.

Moody’s letter pointed out the importance of AM radio transmissions during public safety emergencies such as hurricanes, tornadoes, flooding, earthquakes and other times when federal, state and local officials use AM radio to deliver emergency warnings.

“The decision to eliminate AM radios is even more problematic in light of the Biden Administration’s goal of ‘having 50% of all new vehicle sales be electric by 2030,’ “ Moody wrote. “While we oppose the Biden Administration’s efforts, they underscore that removing AM radios from electric cars threatens the entire AM radio industry.”

The letter was signed by the attorneys general from Alaska, Arkansas, Idaho, Indiana, Iowa, Kentucky, Louisiana, Mississippi, Montana, Ohio, South Carolina, South Dakota, Utah, Virginia and West Virginia.

“This is absurd, to say the least,” West Virginia Attorney General Patrick Morrisey said. “The public warning system relies on AM stations to warn people of an impending emergency—as we all know, when nearly everything else quits working, you can rely on AM radio to function when it’s needed the most.”

The group also noted that AM radio has free local news, weather, political and sports broadcasts available to those in rural areas where broadband and cellular access is limited and unreliable.

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