3 propane buses added to Arkansas school district

July 27, 2022 By    

Fort Smith Public Schools in Arkansas has added three propane school buses to its fleet. These are the first propane-powered buses at Fort Smith Public Schools, making it the second district in the state to adopt propane buses.

The new Blue Bird Vision Type C buses, equipped with Roush CleanTech propane fuel technology, will be used everyday to transport special needs students.

“Fort Smith Public Schools joins more than 1,000 school districts across the country transitioning to clean-operating, low-cost propane buses,” says Steve Ahrens, Arkansas Propane Gas Association’s executive director. “In addition to reducing emissions, districts are reporting that their total cost of ownership for propane buses is lower than with any other fuel.”

The Fort Smith school district currently runs 83 buses with 55 routes each day. It anticipates saving 60 percent in fuel costs and more in maintenance costs with the propane buses. The school district added an on-site propane fueling station and locked in a long-term fuel price to help with budgeting.

“Installing a propane fueling station costs less than any other transportation fueling infrastructure,” says Gary Tedford, regional sales manager with Central States Bus. “Plus, propane buses fuel as quickly and easily as gasoline or diesel buses.”

To help purchase the propane autogas buses, the school district received funding from the Arkansas Department of Energy and Environment. Additional funding for propane buses is also available for qualifying schools through the Environmental Protection Agency’s Clean School Bus Rebate Program.

“Our district is excited about our new propane buses’ cost-saving benefits to help meet budgets and emissions-reducing benefits that are better for student health and the environment,” says Dennis Siebenmorgen, transportation director of Fort Smith Public Schools.

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About the Author:

Danielle Pesta is the senior digital media manager for North Coast Media, the parent company of LP Gas. She can be reached at dpesta@northcoastmedia.net.

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