Drivers say Roanoke County schools’ new fleet of propane school buses are like driving a luxury car. “It’s like stepping out of a Pinto into a Cadillac, as far as what we’ve been used to as drivers,” said Myron Powell, a bus driver and the Glenvar lot attendant. “This is a very easy driving experience.”
Starting this school year, Detroit Public Schools (DPS) will run the largest fleet of propane autogas school buses in the state. The 35 alternative-fueled buses are part of the district’s efforts to reduce its carbon footprint and lower costs.
The Vinton-Shellsburg Community School district of Vinton, IA made the decision last year to transition some of their fleet to clean burning propane fueled buses. New Century FS, based in Grinnell, IA was there with help in designing and installing the propane fueling station at the district’s bus facility. The district now has four buses running on propane and is planning on adding more in the future.
A recent study cites that the U.S. ranks 14th out of 40 countries in cognitive skills and educational attainment. For the United States to continue to lead in innovation and manufacturing into the next century, we need to continue to re-invest in our most important asset – education for our children.
The Propane Education & Research Council and Metro magazine recognized five transit fleets for their use of propane autogas at September’s BusCon show in Indianapolis. “Propane autogas is a leading alternative fuel in the U.S. that enables fleets to reach sustainability goals without burdening tight budgets,” PERC autogas business development director Mike Taylor said in a release.
The Environmental Protection Agency’s clean school bus program gives out grants to help schools purchase new diesel buses with cleaner exhaust systems. In 2014, seven Iowa school districts got the opportunity to upgrade their bus fleet. A total of $3 million dollars was distributed to 76 districts across the nation.