Alternative Fuel/Propane Buses
Buses can be purpose-built by Original Equipment Manufacturers (OEMs) with fully integrated propane systems like the ROUSH CleanTech Liquid Propane Autogas Fuel System or given LPG conversions by QSRs (qualified system retrofitters) prior to delivery.
Propane itself is a safe, clean, and reliable alternative fuel with an established infrastructure system of over 2,500 stations throughout North America easily located with this handy tool from the United States Department of Energy. Propane Autogas, when compared to diesel, offers a 24% reduction in Greenhouse Gas emissions, including a 20% reduction in NOx emissions, and a 60% reduction in CO emissions. In its natural form, propane has no scent, but a scent has been added and is necessary to alert you that there is gas in the air. You will not smell propane as you drive down the road unless there is a leak. This is for your safety. Propane is contained in a tank that is 20 times more puncture resistant than a normal diesel tank. It will not explode during an impact. Propane is non-toxic and non-poisonous. It does not spill, pool, or leave any residue to degrade your engine performance.
Domestically produced propane autogas prices consistently beat foreign oil fuels. Savings are bolstered by tax incentives for purchasing both propane-powered school buses and propane fuel, including a 50-cent rebate on every gallon of propane purchased. Federal Laws and Incentives for Propane (LPG) from the United States Department of Energy
Propane Powered School Buses like the conventional Blue Bird Vision and the smaller Blue Bird Micro Bird by Girardin can be ordered today.
Propane Powered Commercial Buses are also available. Contact Louis Tagliaferre, Commercial Bus Sales Manager [email protected] 800-825-8273 for more information.
Real World Examples
If your school district or bus fleet is weighing propane bus pros and cons we have videos for you as well as some additional quotes in a sixteen page brochure and a great news story about a fleet that has been using propane for over 30 years.
We are pleased to have assisted CMCSS in becoming the largest Alternative Fuel School Bus Fleet in Tennessee by providing propane school bus options from ROUSH CleanTech who developed the engine that reduces the emissions and Blue Bird Corporation which has been developing several types of cleaner-fueled buses to provide our customers with more options.
North Clay Community School District located in Louisville, Illinois “was the first school district in that state to operate propane-fueled school buses. According to the district’s transportation manager, Bryan West, they bought their first propane [Blue Bird] bus with the ROUSH CleanTech liquid propane injection system in 2000. The district now has three [Blue Bird] propane buses in their 17-bus fleet and plans to convert the entire fleet as budgets and time allow.” Check out the video produced by South Central FS, their local propane supplier, based in Effingham, IL.
The Propane Education and Research Council created a webinar featuring Ron Latko, Transportation Director for Mesa Unified School District in Mesa, Arizona. Mr. Latko “presents comprehensive findings about the initial process involved with implementing propane autogas school buses. In addition, he covers fuel savings, maintenance savings, along with training and support after the sale.”
Closer to home, our own president Jeff Reitz interviews Jeff Schwepker, the transportation director at Fort Zumwalt R-II School District in O’Fallon MO. Touching on Midwestern issues like cold weather performance, Mr. Schwepker says they have had “zero cold start problems” and could almost do away with his cold start team. He cites forward thinking about the environment and economical use of tax-based funding as reasons the district chose to order Blue Bird Propane-Powered Vision school buses a year ago and continues to add additional propane Visions to their fleet. Speed bumps in the process? Bus drivers had to be reminded of the simple start procedure (see instructional video below) and parents are still adjusting to not being able to hear these quiet buses making their way through the subdivisions and having to watch the clock to know when to meet the bus outside their door. Overall he is very happy with his new green Blue Birds.
Another one of our customers, Crittenden County School District, created this 15 minute video presentation elaborating on how propane buses help them to meet their big six overarching goals, Kentucky State School Board approval of their pilot program, the data collected over the 2 months of propane vs. diesel bus service, and future projections for this pilot program and the state of Kentucky schools.
Blue Bird’s Propane Autogas Brochure presents an abundance of facts about propane fuel, the infrastructure it requires, specifications for Blue Bird’s Propane-Powered Vision and Propane-Powered Micro Bird G5, the Roush CleanTech Advantage, the safety and innovation of their tanks, engines, and transmissions, as well as information about their service network, parts support, Company Promise, and quotes from their satisfied customers.
Thank you School Bus Fleet magazine for this great long range confirmation of the short term data we present in our videos above. Texas school bus fleet still keen on propane after 30 years.
Josh Olsen, assistant superintendent with Olympia Schools in McLean and Tazewell counties, shared his experience with propane powered school buses. Total cost of ownership, including reduced fuel expense and up to 50 percent reduced oil consumption, saves his school district money. The ability to start up faster than diesel vehicles in cold temperatures, cleaner exhaust, improved performance, and quieter operation make the propane powered buses popular with drivers, students, and parents alike. Prairieland FS Autogas Summit September 2015
Visit our YouTube channel Alternative Fuel School Buses playlist to view more true life testimonials.
Visit our YouTube channel Propane Instructional Videos playlist to learn
How to Fuel your Propane-Powered Blue Bird Bus
How to Properly Start your Propane-Powered Blue Bird Bus
How to Drive your Propane-Powered Blue Bird Bus
Fuel Saving Tips for Propane School Buses