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United States: Maryland’s First Propane Autogas Bus Starts Operations

Anne Arundel County students boarded the first school bus fueled by propane autogas in the state of Maryland. The Blue Bird Vision Propane bus, from contractor Jubb’s Bus Service, Inc., went into operation for the 2015-16 school year.

“With the rising costs of diesel maintenance and our interest in incorporating green technologies, it was time to explore our options,” said Randall Jubb, president of Jubb’s Bus Service, Inc. “We are the first contractor in Maryland to offer a school bus fueled by emissions-reducing propane autogas to an area school district — and we have plans to transition 20 percent of our fleet to autogas in the future.”

The new Blue Bird Type C bus, equipped with a Ford 6.8L V10 engine, replaces an older diesel bus. A propane autogas fuel system manufactured by ROUSH CleanTech powers the bus.

Historically, propane autogas costs about 50 percent less than diesel per gallon and reduces maintenance costs due to its clean-operating properties. Currently, Jubb’s Bus Service, Inc., pays almost 45 percent less for propane autogas compared with diesel. Sharp Energy installed an onsite autogas fuel station with 1,000-gallon capacity. The infrastructure can expand to 4,000 gallons as the need arises.

“We are proud to partner with a forward-thinking company like Jubb’s Bus Service, Inc.,” said Brian Carney, group account director for ROUSH CleanTech. “They’re joining over 500 other school districts nationwide experiencing the benefits of propane autogas technology: lowering operating costs, maintenance costs and emissions.”

The propane autogas bus will reduce nitrogen oxide emissions by over 1,200 pounds and more than 30 pounds of particulate matter each year compared with the diesel bus it is replacing. Propane autogas also reduces hydrocarbon emissions and virtually eliminates particulate matter, when compared with conventionally fueled school buses.

“Blue Bird provides school bus contractors with innovative and cost-effective green transportation solutions for its school district customers,” said Phil Horlock, president and CEO of Blue Bird Corporation. “Through its research, Jubb’s Bus Service, Inc., decided that Blue Bird’s Vision Propane bus is the best choice for reducing fuel and maintenance costs while providing cleaner air for the community.”

 

Source: Blue Bird