New LPG school bus fleet launches in Indiana
If you follow gazeo.com on a regular basis, this piece of news is piece of news is probably hardly a surprise to you. You're bound to find yourself equally non-surprised to learn that the two companies behind the new bus fleet are Blue Bird (manufacturer of the actual vehicles) and Roush CleanTech (provider of autogas technology and conversion components). What you may (but may not) be surprised with is that the buses have been purchased and put into service by the Metropolitan School District of Warren Township. And this is the largest autogas-powered school bus deployment to date in the state of Indiana.
While it may sound big, there are in fact 11 new vehicles. Ten of them are regular models capable of carrying 78 passengers each and the remaining one features a wheelchair lift to meet the needs of disabled students. The buses will replace their aging equivalents equipped with Diesel engines. Reasons for switching to the alternative fuel may seem obvious enough, but let's hear it from a person directly involved in the process.
Better cold weather starts, lower maintenance and fuel cost, quieter buses, as well as better air quality for students, the bus driver and our community were the reasons we chose autogas. With the fuel’s clean operation, we anticipate longer maintenance intervals and lower periodic maintenance cost.
Steve Smith, director of transport for M.S.D. Warren Township
The school disctrict has installed two onsite refueling stations, each with a 1000-gallon (approx. 3800-litre) LPG tank. They are conveniently located and available 24/7 to allow longer routes and field trips, so drivers should hardly notice the switch from their point of view. The environment will notice, however, since the 11 buses will collectively reduce nitrous oxide emissions by over 6 tonnes and particulate matter emissions by nearly 160 kg annually. The school district on its part will also make significant savings, since LPG is usually half the price of diesel.
We are focused on providing innovative and cost-effective green transportation solutions for our school district customers. We are delighted that through their research, M.S.D. Warren Township determined that Blue Bird’s Propane-Powered Vision bus is the best choice for reducing fuel and maintenance costs while providing cleaner air for the community.
Phil Horlock, president and CEO of Blue Bird
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