USPS contractor adds propane autogas trucks through DOE grant

April 20, 2021 By    
Photo: Roush CleanTech

Photo: Roush CleanTech

Hi Pro Inc. is adding five Class 6 straight box propane autogas delivery trucks to its fleet. The company, a nationwide mail logistics contractor, has more than 40 years of service history with the U.S. Postal Service (USPS).

The vehicles are part of a $1 million research pilot project funded through the U.S. Department of Energy’s (DOE’s) Office of Energy Efficiency & Renewable Energy. The project, “Delivering Clean Air in Denver: Propane Trucks and Infrastructure in Mail Delivery Application,” will fund the purchase and deployment for Hi Pro Inc.’s fleet in Denver.

The Denver Metro Clean Cities Coalition (DMCC) has partnered with the DOE’s National Renewable Energy Laboratory to track data and performance measurements of the propane autogas trucks. DMCC will work with the Propane Education & Research Council to provide educational materials using the collected data.

“Our goal coming out of this project is to demonstrate real-world applications of propane autogas as an alternative to diesel-fueled trucks,” Bonnie Trowbridge, executive director of the DMCC, says in a news release. “As a state that prioritizes sustainability, we’re especially excited to conduct this research in Colorado. This is an opportunity to study the air quality benefits of the ultra-low NOx propane engines and show that propane autogas is a viable clean energy source for fleets.”

The Ford gasoline trucks will be upfitted with a propane system developed by Roush CleanTech. The conversion will employ ultra-low NOx engines, which in real-world testing reduced harmful emissions by 96 percent compared to diesel. The engine is certified to the optional ultra-low NOx CARB .02 standard, operating 90 percent cleaner than the Environmental Protection Agency’s strictest heavy-duty standard. Each truck will also produce 281 metric tons of carbon dioxide less per year than the same electric vehicle charging and operating using Colorado’s electric grid, according to the company.

“We are honored to be selected for this important research project and to reduce emissions in our community,” Joshua Stoneback, CEO at Hi Pro Inc., says in the release. “Through this project, we will create a playbook for fleets to also go green with propane autogas. In fact, we would like to implement similar low-NOx emission fuel choices across the nation with the assistance of USPS and our partners in this Denver Metro project.”

The vehicles and infrastructure will be delivered and installed later this year. The new propane station will be provided by AmeriGas.

“We are excited to get this project off the ground and to start supplying Hi Pro Inc. with domestic, clean propane autogas,” says Chris Ransom, national autogas account manager for AmeriGas. “We’re ready to show that propane autogas can provide fleets with the performance and range they need while still achieving near-zero emissions.”

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

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