Fort Lauderdale, Fla. (PRWEB) April 07, 2014
Broward County Public Schools, the nation’s sixth largest school district, purchased 98 alternative fuel school buses to lower its operating costs while improving the environment.
The purchase supports the top 10 school district’s environmental stewardship program, “Learn Green. Live Green.” This is the nation’s largest single order of autogas fueled buses by a school district.
“We’ll be using these buses for our high mileage routes due to the substantial cost and maintenance savings with clean and safe autogas,” said Pat Snell, director of student transportation and fleet services for Broward County Public Schools. “Some of the savings will be funneled directly back into the classroom.”
The county expects a six-month return on investment for the additional cost of the alternative fuel buses. According to Snell, the county will lock in an autogas fuel price at substantially less than their diesel cost. Historically, autogas costs about 50 percent less than diesel per gallon and reduces maintenance costs due to its clean-burning properties.
Each bus will displace about 40,000 gallons of diesel and emit 150,000 fewer pounds of carbon dioxide over their lifetime. According to Snell, each bus will travel about 17,000 miles per year.
“School districts are eager for cleaner, lower emissions solutions that also work with their budgets. The Blue Bird Propane-Powered Vision and Micro Bird meet these needs with lower fuel and maintenance costs, decreased noise and environmental benefits,” said Phil Horlock, president and CEO of Blue Bird Corporation. “We applaud Broward County Public Schools for their forward-thinking leadership in the state of Florida.”
Across the country, hundreds of thousands of students are transported daily to school in buses operating on autogas. It is the most commonly used alternative fuel in the nation and worldwide. Vehicles fueled by autogas comply with the same safety standards as their conventionally fueled counterparts.
The purchase qualifies Broward County Public Schools to apply for funding through a state rebate program. The Florida incentive waives state taxes for gaseous alternative fuels, which include propane autogas and natural gas.
“Broward County Public Schools is leading the state with its environmental commitment and paving the way for other districts to choose this proven, versatile and American-made fuel,” said Todd Mouw, vice president of sales and marketing for ROUSH CleanTech. “The Blue Bird and ROUSH CleanTech propane autogas solution offers the best total cost of ownership alternative fuel school bus.”
The school district purchased the buses from Florida Transportation Systems, the authorized Blue Bird dealer in Florida. The Blue Bird Propane-Powered Visions, each equipped with a ROUSH CleanTech fuel system, include a 100-gallon extended range tank that provides a 93-usable gallon capacity. Delivery begins in May for operation for the 2014-2015 school year.
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About Blue Bird: Blue Bird offers a complete line of Type A, C and D school buses in a variety of options and configurations. For more than 85 years, Blue Bird Corporation has continued to set industry standards with its innovative design and manufacturing capabilities. Additionally, Blue Bird provides comprehensive financial solutions through Blue Bird Capital Services. Today, Blue Bird has more than 1,500 employees, Georgia-based manufacturing facilities and an extensive network of dealers and service-parts facilities throughout North America. Its global presence can be seen in more than 60 countries through sales into Africa, Asia, the Caribbean, Latin America, Europe and the Middle East. For more information, visit blue-bird.com.
About Florida Transportation Systems: Family owned and operating in Florida for more than 30 years, Florida Transportation Systems is a full service dealership representing nationally respected brands including Blue Bird, ElDorado National, Goshen Coach and Girardin buses and BraunAbility wheelchair vans. Currently, we serve our partners with offices in Tampa and Pompano Beach and maintain a strong network of authorized warranty repair centers to ensure the highest level of customer satisfaction. For more information, visit fts4buses.com.