2018 Blue Bird Experience

 On May 11, 2018 FTS hosted The 2018 Blue Bird Experience Ride & Drive Event at Marchant Field in Lakeland, Florida. The Experience gave attendees the chance to gain key knowledge to advance their school district's potential and to find new ways to increase safety and put more money back into the classrooms. 

The event included in-person demos, ride and drives, exhibits, vendor showcase and technology orientation sessions. With vendors like Bendix, Cummins, Roush, Blue Bird and more there was plenty of new technologies to view. 

During this event Blue Bird debuted the new Electric School Bus along with a Propane, Gas, CNG and Diesel school bus. Also included in this event was the Bendix Stability Control demonstration (see video below). 

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Blue Bird Now Taking Orders For Electric School Buses To Be Delivered In 2018

Blue Bird has begun taking orders for its new electric Type C & D configuration school buses! The company is reportedly the only one in the US currently offering such configurations.

The electric school buses that are ordered as of right now will reportedly be delivered before the end of 2018. The buses have reportedly already finished certification testing and are being delivered.

The CEO and President of Blue Bird Corporation, Phil Horlock, commented on the news: “Our electric buses have received an Executive Order from the California Air Resources Board and both HVIP and TVIP listing, which qualify Blue Bird’s electric buses for grants available in California and New York, respectively. That’s great news for our customers and following our Ride & Drives in California, we are already receiving orders from school districts.”

As some further background here, it’s worth noting that the powertrain utilized in the new Blue Bird electric school buses was developed in partnership with EDI and Adomani, so the quality should be quite high. To be a bit more specific, the school buses feature the EDI PowerDrive 7000 EV drivetrain system (for more on that see: Electric Semi Trucks & Heavy-Duty Trucks — Available Models & Planned Models), a variant on a drivetrain solution that has now tallied over 2.5 million miles of commercial fleet operation around the world.

That being the case, durability and reliability shouldn’t be an issue, and there’s a fair likelihood that the Blue Bird buses will actually prove themselves to be more reliable than the diesel school buses which they will be replacing, while at the same time cutting the diesel emissions exposure of those riding and driving the buses.

As far as range goes, the 160 kilowatt-hour (kWh) battery-packs should allow for the easy meeting of operational requirements, with the real-world range expectations being 100-120 miles per full-charge. These battery packs are backed by a limited seven-year battery warranty, reportedly.

 

 

 

 

 

 

Contract with the Florida Department of Transportation’s TRIPS Program

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                FTS is pleased to announce we have been awarded a Contract with the Florida Department of Transportation’s TRIPS Program to sell the ENC EZ Rider II Low Floor Heavy Duty Bus. The EZ Rider II offers operators the highest capacity and the widest variety of options available in the market. Available with Cummins Diesel or Compressed Natural Gas, the EZ-Rider II also offers front or center door ramps, a transit style air conditioning compressor, multiple floor plan configurations and a maintenance friendly design to ensure a longer life and lower maintenance costs than our competition. For more information on the EZ Rider II, Contract TRIPS-17-MD-FTS or to schedule a demo, please contact Robert Frick rfrick@fts4buses.com or call (800) 282 – 8617.  

Introducing the All-New BraunAbility Dodge Simple Stow™ Infloor

 The all-new Dodge Simple Stow Infloor is a cost-effective, ADA compliant conversion that allows operators to easily and safely accommodate both wheelchair and ambulatory passengers. This application features a manual infloor ramp with a stow/deploy handle for easy operation.

The all-new Dodge Simple Stow Infloor is a cost-effective, ADA compliant conversion that allows operators to easily and safely accommodate both wheelchair and ambulatory passengers. This application features a manual infloor ramp with a stow/deploy handle for easy operation.

Click on this video to view a product demonstration: 

Click on the links below to learn more

 

 

DIESEL AND PROPANE AND GAS, OH MY!

One of the most important decisions regarding a bus purchase is the type of fuel to choose. There is a lot of conflicting information out there today...those that say alternative fuels are not worth pursuing, or that diesel is going the way of the dinosaur. The fact of the matter is, each fleet may operate a different fuel type in order to achieve their best total cost of ownership, or TCO. 

Hundreds of Stakeholders Urge Congress to Renew Alt-Fuel Tax Credit

Hundreds of Stakeholders Urge Congress to Renew Alt-Fuel Tax Credit

More than 300 organizations representing users, retailers, customers, fleet managers, utilities, and producers of clean alternative fuels, including natural gas and propane, have signed a letter urging Congress to reinstate the $0.50/gallon alternative fuels tax credit (AFTC). The National Propane Gas Association (NPGA) and NGVAmerica helped spearhead the effort.

Fla.'s JTA opens test track for future self-driving transit shuttles

Fla.'s JTA opens test track for future self-driving transit shuttles

The self-driving vehicle starts moving as silently as the computer that operates it and the electric battery that powers it. There is none of the hiss that accompanies a train on electrified rails.This transit vehicle runs on rubber tires and pavement as it glides down a test track opened Wednesday by the Jacksonville Transportation Authority.

NASDPTS Session Points to 3-Point Belts’ Potential to Reduce School Bus Injuries

NASDPTS Session Points to 3-Point Belts’ Potential to Reduce School Bus Injuries

Lap-shoulder belts for students and mobile devices for drivers on school buses were among the topics discussed at the annual gathering of state directors last week.

The National Association of State Directors of Pupil Transportation Services (NASDPTS) held its 2017 conference from Nov. 4 to 8 in Columbus.

Shuttle Fleet Discusses Switch from CNG to Propane

Shuttle Fleet Discusses Switch from CNG to Propane

As an airport contractor, ACE Parking had some influence to switch its vehicle from diesel to a cleaner alternative fuel. The options included CNG and propane autogas. ACE first tried CNG. After running its shuttle fleet on CNG for several years, ACE began to implement its propane initiative.

Blue Bird Introduces All-New Electric School Bus Solutions

Blue Bird Introduces All-New Electric School Bus Solutions

Blue Bird unveiled two new electric-powered school buses at the STN Tradeshow to nearly 1,000 live attendees and hundreds more on their live news feeds. Blue Bird introduced its all-new Type A Micro Bird G5 electric-powered school bus and then revealed its all-new electric powered Type D chassis which will power its Type D All American rear engine (RE) school bus.

4 Keys for Enforcing Seat Belt Use

4 Keys for Enforcing Seat Belt Use

Calls for legislation requiring seat belts on school buses have increased recently. Texas and Nevada signed bills into law requiring lap-shoulder belts (also known as three-point belts) on new school buses (although Texas school districts can opt out due to financial constraints). Meanwhile, lawmakers in many other states have introduced school bus seat belt legislation that hasn’t passed.