Tag Archives: School Buses

10 Important Benefits of Propane Based School Buses

Propane is more widely available and is cheaper than both gasoline and diesel which makes it a preferred fuel for running school buses. Generically known as liquefied petroleum gas, propane is available even in rural areas.

The number of school districts that are using propane for their school bus fleets is on the rise. Propane-based school bus sale has increased by around 500% since the year 1912. As of last year, there are about 13000 propane-based school buses that ferry close to 800000 students to and from schools every day.

This naturally leads to the inference that school buses that use propane are seeing more advantages as compared to others. This article attempts to list 10 of the most obvious and important advantages as to why school bus fleets want to power their buses with this gas.

Here follows the 10 important advantages of propane based school buses which you must know.

1: Financial gains

The primary reason why many schools choose propane is for financial gains. The price of propane is low as compared to traditional gasoline or diesel and also reduces the operating costs. The school buses were able to save to the extent of $3000 per bus if it starts running on propane. The range of savings, however, depends on the price of the fuel.

Right away propane is costing just half as much as diesel from the pump station. In a majority of cases, the school sins a contract with the propane retailer for the fuel consumption of the entire fleet of buses and this makes the cost of propane even lower.

2: Lowered maintenance costs

With propane based school buses, it is possible to save maintenance cost This can be possible in several areas, one being less-frequent changes of the engine oil.

An oil change for propane takes up only 7 quarts of oil. However, for a diesel engine, the oil change requires about 17-36 quarts of oil.  The next reason is the installation of less complicated emission control systems which do not use the diesel exhaust fluid. The fuel burns in a clean manner and there is no requirement for add-on filters usually used by diesel engine systems.

3: Propane is a proven fuel alternative

Propane has been used in vehicles ever since the 1970s which makes the technology almost five decades old and proven. Many school districts started using propane from as early as the 1980s.

4: Quick returns on the investments are possible with propane

School districts that had purchased propane-based school bus fleets got back their initial investment in just about an 18- to 24-month period. This was because of reduced fuel expenditure and lowered maintenance costs.

Typically, the cost of propane has a value that is midway between the price of natural gas and oil. Schools also do well by negotiating a fixed propane price for the entire year with the local retailer.
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5: Propane is a non-toxic fuel and is non-spillable too

Propane has lots of good characteristics:

•    It does not contaminate the soil, air or water
•    It is not made up of harmful chemicals like diesel and gasoline
•    Propane is usually used in a closed-loop system as a result of which it does not spill
•    There are no major clean-up concerns for this fuel

6: The refuelling infrastructure is spread out and big enough

Many of the districts have multiple points from where the school bus fleet can refuel. Each fleet can have their own refuelling strategy. The individual buses from a fleet can be part of a refuelling network.

These networks can be used by those bus fleets that do not have a refuelling facility and infrastructure in their premises. Most of the refuelling stations function 24/7 for the convenience of the bus fleets.

7: The propane refuelling infrastructure is easy to create

For bus fleets of big sizes, it is worthwhile to consider installation of a propane refuelling facility if there is sufficient space in their premises. The infrastructure is affordable and is cheaper than installing stations for dispensing petrol or diesel.

If the refuelling station is outside the premises, a centralized location would be the best as it serves to reduce downtime of the buses. It is also a matter of convenience. Such refuelling centres can be up-scaled when the sizes of the fleets increase.

8: Propane engines operate in a cleaner fashion

As propane engines operate in a cleaner manner than diesel engines. This means that school running propane-based buses set do not have to buy an extra set of about 20 ancillary parts that are required to clean the unwanted emissions of diesel engines.

Without these parts, diesel engines would fail to meet environmental protection standards as far as emissions are concerned.

Propane-based buses emit fewer oxides of nitrogen and almost no particulate matter as compared to diesel.

9: Propane buses have no cold-start problems

Propane buses do not have cold-start issues with the result that the school saves a lot of time as well as money.

10: Drivers love propane-based buses

Drivers love propane based buses for the fact that they operate in a much quieter fashion, they accelerate quickly and are easier to handle, unlike diesel buses.

They do not have the exhaust fumes of diesel engines either. They are quick to start even in the dead of winter. Propane buses do not have to ’idle’ before it starts to move. At the end of it all, they are easier to clean and maintain.

Conclusion

A major cost for most schools is the transportation system. The rising fuel costs coupled with the fact that diesel engine mechanics are rare breed these days, most of the schools are settling for buses that use alternative fuels like propane instead of conventional fuels like diesel and gasoline.

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How Electric School Buses Can Save Millions for School Districts

Thanks to modern technology fueled by advancements in batteries, electric school buses have transformed into new-age school transportation options.

Poised to offer a plethora of advantages to all the school districts patronizing electric school buses, this blog sheds light on the monetary benefits by comparing the costs with their benefits.

Enlisting all the ways in which electric school buses can pave the way for long-term cost savings amounting to millions of dollars, here is a detailed cost-benefit analysis concerning these modernized means of school transportation.

  1. It Is All About The Charging Advantage

An electric school bus demands an initial investment of about $225,000. Notwithstanding the fact that this is indeed a huge amount that school districts have to make room for, they can, at the same time avail the advantage of charging these buses during nights.

Since the demand for electricity is low during nighttimes, school districts can potentially save a lot of money under the heads of maintenance and operational costs amounting to $12,000 for every electric school bus. Consider this saving for an entire fleet and the amount will reach millions of dollars.

  1. Software Solutions Can Come As Money-Saving Options

As most of the school districts normally battle with tight budgets, they were on the lookout for alternative means to save monies. This led to the use of state-of-the-art software solutions that could suggest the best possible school bus routes.

While helping school districts to come up with optimized school trips, electric school buses also prompted certain schools to tread the 4-day week instead of a 5-day week to bring down both utility and transportation costs.

The previous versions of electric school buses are also delivering cost-effectiveness coming from the implementation of traditional technologies. It is through this feature that local governments which are facing a tight cash crunch can register potential savings running into huge sums.

  1. Unleash the Power of Alternative Sources of Energy To Fund Other Requirements

School districts which are currently patronizing electric school buses are poised to employ alternative sources of energy that comes in the form of solar panels.

Through these cost-effective and environmental-friendly options, school districts can register some additional savings. These savings can thus be rerouted as investments into school repair funds, paying the salaries of teachers or even to upgrade schooling technologies.

  1. Vehicle-To-Grid Can Earn You Monetary Incentives

The cost-effectiveness of electric school buses comes to the fore when they are allowed to discharge their unused battery power into the electrical grid.

Tagged as the Vehicle-to-Grid (V2G) technology, this is a novel option that can be availed by school districts. When electric school buses of school districts are permitted to empty their unused battery power into the electricity grid, they will get paid for such a service which run into millions of dollars.

  1. The Cost-Benefit Analysis of Electric and Diesel-Powered School Buses

You need to invest $110,000 in a diesel school bus while an electric school bus supporting the V2G technology comes with a $260,000 price tag. This price is inclusive of the 70 kW on-board charger that the electric school bus is meant to use.

When you add up all the costs that you need to incur to manage a fleet of diesel buses including the cost of diesel, you will notice that diesel buses are far more expensive when compared to electric buses.

School districts while battling the poisonous emissions of diesel buses are also expected to spend on medical facilities for the society.

On the flipside, all those electric buses supporting the V2G technology will have to meet the battery charging expenditure along with the initial investment.

And this one-time investment will eventually pave the way for profits coming from non-emission means of school transportation.

A report suggests that Chicago, one of the largest cities of US is tapping the low fuel and operational costs of electric school buses  to save a whopping $25,000 as annual fuel costs per bus.

Supporting the fact that electric school buses will start adding savings faster, a declaration coming from The American School Bus Council cites that a whopping $3.2 billion per annum is spent on diesel.

And with the replacement of diesel school buses with 1,000 electric buses, the US will register profits by not paying for 500 barrels of diesel every single day.

  1. The Metrics of Per-Seat Savings of Electric School Buses

Numbers suggests that an electric bus through its V2G technology will be able to save $6,070 per bus seat. Multiply these savings with the 14-year lifespan of an electric bus and you will arrive at a colossal amount of $230,000.

This is for one single electric bus and the number will exponentially increase once you consider a fleet of electric school buses. If you are speaking about the dollars that need to be spent on climatic changes and medical expenses, every electric school bus seat could lead to a savings of $5,700.

  1. The Future Is Bright for The Patronage of Electric School Buses

It is an important pointer to note that the total cost of maintaining a fleet of electric school buses for their entire lifespan is very less when compared to the diesel-powered school buses.

This positive, when teamed with the fall in battery costs, is all set to promote the sale of electric buses without any subsidy. This will lead to the scenario when an electric bus will become an economical means of school transportation when compared to diesel school buses by the mid-2020.

Research indicates that by 2030, batteries will account for a meager 8% of the total cost of an electric school bus which can be easily bought at an unsubsidized price.

And if battery costs fall further, the cost of acquiring an electric school bus will be on par with that of a diesel-powered school bus, by 2025. That means you can now have the cake and eat it too. An electric school bus which is environment-friendly is also made affordable to school districts.

  1. The Basic Engineering of an Electric School Bus Can Also Lead to Savings

Electric school bus parts are limited in number when compared to the numerous components that are fitted to a diesel-powered school bus. That means, for an electric bus to be set into motion, there will be fewer moving parts which need to be maintained and overhauled.

This limited number of parts which make up an electric school bus can become another strong reason for cost savings to school districts if you consider their maintenance costs with every passing academic year.

  1. Schools Can Capitalize on Federal Funding Schemes

You also need to keep in mind that most of the local transit authorities in the US are funded by schemes run by the federal government. In this situation, most of the school bus purchasers began scouting for external funds that could support their transportation costs.

That was when electric school buses came in as the low-cost alternatives for schools to benefit from federal funding. In the event that federal funding is stalled, school districts patronizing electric school buses stand to gain with the quick and steep drop in battery prices.

Conclusion

With so much being spoken about the advantages of electric school buses as an environment-friendly and cost-effective option, the above pointers bring about the affordability of these non-emission school buses.

School districts who operate with a sense of farsightedness can be at the receiving end of a number of monetary benefits that these electric school buses offer.

So it is time for schools in different parts of the globe to tread the path of cost-effectiveness and health-consciousness. And once these two objectives are met, you will be in a position to promote the growth of a healthy and tech-savvy society.

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12 Common Questions on Electric School Buses

All set to promote a healthier student fraternity, ‘all-electric’ school buses promise cleaner air to inhale when compared totheir diesel counterparts which release harmful exhausts into the atmosphere.

Additionally, electric school buses are affordable options too when school districts can offset the initial investment with their long-term operational benefits.

In an attempt to highlight the advantages of signing up for a fleet of electric school buses to school districts and to the environment at large, here are certain questions accompanied with their answers.

1. What is the range of distance that can be covered by an electric school bus?

A:The efficiency of electric school buses can be measured in terms of the distance they can cover until they reach a zero-charge state. Normally, an electric bus comes with a range of 96 miles per day.

A prominent automobile company Daimler introduced a high-tech electric school bus that can cover a distance of 100 miles while transporting a maximum of 81 kids.

In the event school districts are looking to add more range, there is a provision to add another pack of batteries so that an extended range along with a safe, emission-free and quiet ride can be promised to students.

Blue Bird electric school buses promise a range of 120 miles after a single and full battery charge.

2. What are the types of batteries that can promise 3,000 completely recharged cycles?

A: Xalt Energy batteries are certified to hold up to 3,000 complete recharge cycles. A full cycle is the one that is initiated from a completely drained-out battery until it registers a fully-charged state.

3. What are the technical specifications with regard to wattage and the charging of batteries?

A: Electric-powered school buses market is equipped with a 160 kWh battery which requires up to 8 hours of charging time. It should be noted that this battery gets back 19.2 kW of charge with every hour of running time. 

4. What is the durability of electric school bus batteries?

A: Given that the school calendar adds up to 190 working days, electric school bus batteries take about 10 years for them to completely depreciate.

The good news here is that even after the battery degradation process starts, school districts can still expect them to run with a 70%-80% on-road efficiency.

5. Are there any training facilities that are offered by electric school bus manufacturers so that school bus drivers can extract the maximum benefit of batteries?

A: Since electric school buses employ novel technologies, getting to know about training opportunities is a matter of concern for school districts.

In line with this common need, electric school bus manufacturer that offers video assistance  comes in the form of training modules.

While one video series imparts training, there is another video series that teaches bus drivers the best practices that will guarantee the maximum efficiency of batteries and a good driving range.

6. What about the warranties that are in favor of electric school buses so that they run smoothly on roads at all times?

A: In an attempt to lend a helping hand to all the school districts which have signed up for electric school buses, there are many dealers that offer after-sales support. They also offer warranties so that these modern school buses run efficiently and smoothly on city roads.

7. What is the initial cost of installing a charging station along with the necessary equipment?

A: Speaking of the budgetary requirements that should be met by school transporters in erecting a charging station, school districts are expected to set aside funds between $600 and $3,000.

This fund can serve the installation of a charging point along with peripherals. It is also recommended that schools follow the ‘one-vehicle, one-charger’ ratio so as to not only keep the operational costs low but also to ensure the efficiency of the charging stations. This is the infrastructure cost that should be incurred, keeping in mind the electric fleet.

8. What are the statistics that vouch for the prominence of electric buses?

A: The following statisticsvouch for the substantial reduction in the operatingcosts concerninga fleet of electric school buses. Electric buses register a whopping 82% drop in fuel costs alongside promising a massive 75% decline in the annual cost of maintaining a fleet.

Notwithstanding the fact that all-electric school buses come with double the price tags as diesel-run buses, you can save close to $2,000 on fuel costs and $4,400 on maintenance costs, every year.

9. In what way do electric school buses promise a healthier society?

A: Another common question revolves around is the health of students plying in electric school buses. It is a well-known fact that electric school buses do not emit any poisonous gases that impair the respiratory health of students.

Alongside preventing the onset of breathing issues, electric school buses nip off the instances of lung cancer which is caused by the constant ingestion of exhaust fumes.

A report which was published in June 2018 states that electric buses curbed close to 5.3 million tons of polluted emissions into the atmosphere alongside decongesting the city traffic by removing 1 million cars from the roads. 

10. In what other creative ways can school districts make the most of these electric school buses during summer breaks?

A: School districts which are operating a fleet of electric school buses can bring in some creativity during the lean periods of summer breaks.

When these batteries are not in use during vacation, they can be used as backup power sources for the electric grid. In this way, school districts can earn some money from the state electric utilities when school bus batteries take on the title of mobile energy storing equipment.

11. What are the striking advantages of operating a fleet of electric school buses?

A: With a number of advancements taking place in the sphere of battery technology, electric school buses are poised to avail many advantages.

Since these buses do not come with an engine that needs to be maintained or instances demanding the change of engine oil, you can enjoy reduced maintenance costs.

These buses promise excellent temperature control by performing to their optimum level, irrespective of the weather conditions. They also ease the traffic congestion on roads.

12. What are the other proponents in favor of electric school buses?

A: School districts can make the most of the steep decline in the battery costs along with constant improvements in their performance.

With these positives in place, a number of states across the US are going in for plug-in buses so as to encourage these zero-emission school buses. An additional advantage also comes in the form of an expanded driving range that these all-electric school buses promise.

Closing Thoughts

If you are able to get appropriate and data-specific answers to the above 25 questions about electric school buses, you are good to go. As a decision maker of a school district contemplating to operate a fleet of electric school buses, you will be proud of your move to support the environment-friendly objectives of your state.

While you can make the most of grant incentives, you will also incur fewer maintenance costs. Additionally, you will be in a strong position to exercise a better temperature control on your electric school bus which lives by the promise of ‘cleaner air for healthier generations’.

 

 

 

 

 

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Top 7 Advantages of Wifi on School Buses

In the modern day and age, due to the rapid advancement in technology and communication, almost everyone and everything is available online. Learning and education is no exception to this. It is no longer confined to the classroom, and students can learn about faraway places and obscure things, within a single click.

Owing to the fact that students are expected to now a great deal even when the time is limited, schools are determined to utilize their time to the fullest and enable the student to achieve her/his maximum potential. It is therefore no wonder that WiFi on school buses have become quite popular.

Enabling WiFi facilities in school buses is not a very expensive thing. If you think about its advantages, then it is a wise thing. This article seeks to illuminate the advantages of having WiFi on buses.

  1. Better Tracking Facilities

Enabling buses with WiFi offers the school and parents with distinct advantage of tracking the ride. This means that the movement of buses can be tracked, making it safer for the students. Any irresponsible behavior of the driver like over speeding, sharp turns, skipping signals etc. can be recorded, and punitive action can be taken against him or her. This also acts as a deterrent for the driver.

An advantage to the driver is that s/he can know in advance the traffic conditions, thus saving time and fuel. It also helps in monitoring the idle time of the bus, enabling optimum utilization. It is also possible to keep records, even of the minutest details, and then obtain them in a form that is comprehensible. Tracking systems also help in giving feedback about the condition of the bus and the service schedule.

  1. Helps to Alert Parents and School

Having WiFi on buses also makes it safer for students. It helps to track students and immediate alert can be sent to the concerned authorities in case there is a problem. It helps in making the parents, students and teachers feel secure. It is also possible to alert the police promptly if there is any security threat.

And also if the bus is late or if a student does not get into the bus or gets off at the wrong stop, parents will get notified. They would know the exact time for dropping and for picking up their wards. All this is only possible if the bus is connected to internet and the ride and students are effectively tracked.

  1. Learning in the Bus

In the fast-paced modern world, it is important to utilize the day to the fullest. WiFi enabled buses can help in providing education and learning to the students even on the buses itself. Keeping in mind the fact that most students travel for long hours before reaching the school, this seems to be an effective way to utilize time and keep the students engaged in productive activities.

Children will show interest in this form of learning. This also adds to the time that children can spend time with their families as they can utilize the time spent in traveling for doing their homework.

  1. Preventing ill Behavior

Engaging students in learning activities while traveling to school can also help in preventing destructive tendencies. This is especially important in cognizance of the fact that a lot of bullying and sexual harassment amongst students happens in buses. If the students are kept occupied during this time, there is a possibility that this behavior can be curbed to a great extent.

  1. Better for the Economically Disadvantaged Group

The economically underprivileged group of students who do not have the facility of internet at home can benefit tremendously through these WiFi enabled school buses. They can complete their projects and use it for learning purposes also. These buses can also be parked in areas where these students come from, giving them the advantage of WiFi enabled area.

These students can be provided with their own passwords and log in ids, thus securing the network and preventing unauthorized use. It is also possible to monitor what the children are accessing on the internet.

  1. Better for Longer Routes

School buses are very often used to commute longer roads while taking the class for field trips or picnics. While traveling, students can be kept engaged and entertained. Information about the site and the activities that the students can engage in can also be imparted to the students in the buses.

Parents will also become more willing to send their students for these activities, if they know that the students can be tracked and in case of an emergency, they can be immediately notified. The virtual presence of teachers can be increased through software like Skype.

  1. Easier to Impart Knowledge to Large number of Students

Safety instructions regarding the course of action that should be taken in case of a fire in the bus, or an accident, can be easily explained and demonstrated with the help of WiFi. This means that special time does not need to be scheduled for this, thus resulting in time saving.  

Children can learn their subjects while on their way to school without the presence of more number of staffs. Animation can be used to explain students, thus making it more entertaining and ensuring that the students pay attention and learn better. And finally, feedback from the students can be recorded and incorporated for future use.

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Propane School Buses – What are the Pros and Cons

Propane school vehicles have turned out to be a mainstay in both suburban, as well as in urban communities. They offer students easy access to their school campuses. Moreover, Propane school buses are offering a more inexpensive as well as an ecologically friendly option.

Although moving to Propane-powered school buses may need a huge initial investment, there are considerable cost benefits, as well, over time. It is also essential to note that propane-operated buses are operating with the latest technology.

Though there are higher expenses related to the conversion, there are substantial convenience and savings, as well.

Before considering propane for school buses, every school should consider its pros and cons. Here are some of the pros and cons of Propane school buses that you must know.

Pros of a Propane School Bus

As far as the level of emissions is concerned, propane emits less nitrogen oxide, so it is an extremely enviable option. The emissions of nitrogen oxide will be condensed by 11% simply by changing the exiting diesel-powered school bus into a propane-powered one.

Propane-operated school buses are a cheaper option in due course, as well. Some of the other benefits are as follows:

1. Propane is an established substitute for other fuels.

Most of the school buses habitually viewed the propane energy systems as a budding technology, but actually, it is not true. In fact, propane has been fuelling school buses since its introduction as a  bus fuel from the 1970s.

Propane fuel has been acknowledged as the best, most trusted, and affordable one amid all schools in 50 states in United States, as well as in other countries worldwide.

It has been a long-traditional fuel solution for a variety of applications, including school buses. School which can easily get propane fuel started using this for their buses.

2. Propane-powered school buses offer the minimum total price of ownership.

School buses that are fuelled by Propane tender the lowest total ownership price when compared to other fuels. Some schools get their first investment back in their buses in as early as one-and-half to two years.  This is mainly due to the reduced maintenance expenses as well as fuel prices.

Normally, wholesale Propane is less costly than the traditional fuels. Additionally, the costs usually fall between the price of natural gas and oil, which are used to produce propane.

As propane has the ability to burn hygienic fuel, maintenance expenses are significantly reduced. Moreover, Propane-powered school buses need less volume of oil when compared to that of buses that operate through other fuels.

3. The refueling infrastructure of Propane can accommodate any size of the fleet

Schools have numerous refueling options for their school bus fleet, operating with propane. Thus, a refueling plan can be customized to the individual requirements of each fleet.

Some schools will get the maximum benefits from joining a refueling system. This is the best and shrewd option for the bus fleets with restricted space at their facility to put in refilling infrastructure. Refueling systems offer the benefit of 24 x 7 access, through a card-lock arrangement.

Propane school bus fleets with sufficient space at their facilities can think about the on-site refilling infrastructure, which is the most inexpensive way of installing propane.

A central location offers ease and abridged downtime for school bus drivers, and the fuel station can be upgraded to meet the fleet needs of the schools while it grows. Schools can either hire infrastructure from a Propane seller or buy their own infrastructure.

4. Propane is a harmless, non-pollutant, as well as a no-leak fuel

Schools that run propane-powered buses have no need to worry about the spilling fuel onto streets or footpaths where drivers and students could be exposed to the injurious chemicals that produce diesel and gasoline.

Actually, as propane is a no-leak fuel, the buses that use it as a fuel will come under closed-loop fuel structure. This offers schools a major benefit by getting rid of hazmat cleaning concerns or upcoming ecological mitigation, particularly at repairs and garaging facilities.

5. Propane is a local fuel

As propane is a local fuel, members of school community and small business owners had become the retailers of propane fuel. This is also another way to keep the school money within the community.

There are many other reasons which made more and more school districts making use of propane fuel in their school buses. They are:

  • Good combustion.
  • Extended shelf life.
  • Available during the power cut.
  • Trouble-free storage in small tanks as well as in large tanks.
  • Home delivery is feasible for larger tanks.

Cons of a Propane School Bus

As schools are seeking the most cost-effective as well as the safest school buses, it is vital to understand the way to compare. This means that which would be the finest option, not only in terms of initial cost but also in terms of operating as well as maintenance expenses.

Propane has less power as well as less efficient for each gallon when compared to other fuels. School buses that run with a propane engine will offer less performance.

Therefore, propane is a more costly option, except, if your schools are economical. Moreover, when the school buses get older, during cold seasons, they can get a bit finicky and they may need to freeze up prior to heating up of the engine coolant.

Another major con of the propane-fueled school buses is the fueling. A school operating such a bus must make sure that they can get proper propane supply  so that they don’t have to face any difficulty.

Some of the other drawbacks of operating Propane school buses are:

1. Propane is not easily available when compared to other fuels

When schools need to refill a big tank of their school bus, it is rather difficult, as propane is not readily available like other fuels. As only, some gas stations have the well-pressurized tanks that can store propane in a liquid condition. Drivers of the Propane school buses need to plan well in advance to fill up the entire tank of their buses.

2. Propane-fuelled buses will offer a low mileage

Propane-operated school buses will offer a lower performance besides offering a low mileage per gallon when compared to other fuels. This means that home heating tanks are required to be bigger when compared to that of other fuel tanks.

Besides the complexity of locating propane resources, this can make the filling of the propane tank a more inconvenient process.

3. Propane gas burners are extremely sensitive to temperatures

This means that a school bus that operates through propane will not function properly as the gas burners of the Propane fuel tank will not perform well during the freezing temperatures.

As the Propane is also a gas, the cold temperature may cause it to reduce in volume. This, in turn, will decrease the pressure in the engine system, causing less gas attaining the burner to ignite. This is the major setback when the Propane gas is being burned in outside applications.

4. Propane is an easily flammable fuel

As Propane can easily catch fire, it is considered an unsafe fuel to operate school buses. When propane escapes into a restricted space, it can increase and blow up if exposed to a flame or spark.

Thus, in a Propane-fueled school bus, it is vital and safe to check the fuel line carefully to make sure that the fuel is not leaking. Broken propane fuel tanks in a school bus can be an explosion hazard, as well, as the inside pressure could make the fuel tank of the bus burst.

5. Propane is restricted in its potential

Although propane is abundant in supply, it is limited in its perspective, as it is a derivative of petroleum cleansing. The supply, as well as the accessibility of Propane, is closely associated with the supply and the accessibility of petroleum.

When petroleum is extensively available, propane will be available in plenty. If not, there will a lack in availability of Propane. This means that schools operating their propane-powered buses cannot count on the availability of adequate amount of the fuel at all times.

Some of the other cons of operating the propane school buses are:

  • The tank of the bus is more susceptible to explode, as propane is a flammable gas.
  • The propane fuel network is more difficult.
  • Larger propane tanks are less attractive.
  • Higher fitting expenses.
  • Loss generation of power.

To conclude, propane fuel tanks are big and they may be an unappealing addition to the school buses. This is for the reason that they not only stock an adequate amount of fuel for the future use, but they will also allow the schools to operate their buses in a more cost-efficient way.

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12 Important Benefits of School Buses

School buses have always been a common and one of the most preferred modes of transportation for school children. Parents all across the globe are using services of school buses to pick and drop their kids for past few decades.

But still, when it comes to deciding whether or not to use services of a school bus for kids, many parents find it difficult to make a decision.

If you are also finding it hard to choose a mode of communication for your kid for their school, then here we are listing a few benefits of school buses to help you make a choice. 

Benefits of School Buses for Parents

1. Always on time

One of the most important benefits of school buses is that they arrive on time. Every morning, you know when the bus will be at the stop to pick your kid. So accordingly, you can manage your timing and ensure that your little one reaches school on time.

On the other hand, when you choose to pick and drop your kid on your own, managing time becomes a little tricky, especially if you have more than one kid and they are in different schools or have different regimes.

Also, on rainy days or when you are sick, or your vehicle is not working, your kids either get late to the school or end up taking a leave.

2. School buses now come with GPS systems

GPS system on a school bus means you can always track the location of your kid. The GPS tracker empowers parents to know their child's location and give them peace of mind.

At the same time, it is a blessing in times of emergency; parents can easily track where the bus is and can reach the location immediately. 

3. Kids make new friends

From a young age, kids get to learn a lot of new things. And when they travel in school buses, they not just make new friends, but they learn sharing, companionship and how to make new friends.

These things will help them for years to come. For school going kids’, school bus is usually the best place where they get to meet new kids and make friends.

4. Kids learn to take care of their things:

When kids use school buses, they learn to take care of their personal belongings, like a school bag, water bottle, and lunch box. This helps them in their overall development and well-being and makes them a responsible and independent individual.

5. Kids learn to manage their time

School buses daily come at the same stop on same time. As a result, kids become very conscious and careful about the timing and learn to complete their things on time.

They get ready on time to make sure that they catch their bus. Also, another motivating factor to catch the bus on time is the friend circle they have on their bus.

6. Parents have complete peace of mind

When using services of school buses, parents can rest assured about the conveyance and safety of their kids. They don’t have to worry about daily commute of their kids and to manage their to-do list according to the timing of the school.

They can easily carry on with their tasks and personal commitments with complete peace of mind that the school bus will pick and drop their kid on time, without a miss no matter what.

Benefits of School Buses from School’s Point of View

7. Classes can start on time

When you have school buses, you can be assured that kids and teachers will be on the school premises on time and classes can start on scheduled time. This makes the daily schedule as smooth as possible.

8. Keep parents updated on their kids’ location with a GPS system

With GPS system you can always keep parents updated about the location of their kids. They can check if the bus is following the given route and is on time. This creates a level of trust and parents become assured about the safety of their little ones.

9. It is an additional facility that you can offer to parents

Parents when choosing a school for their kids look for facilities that the school is offering. And by providing school bus facility, you can increase your list of offerings and attract more and more parents.

Parents also feel relaxed that they don’t have to bother about daily dropping and to pick their kids.

General Benefits

10. Lesser Vehicles on the Road

When transporting a school student to and from school, parents need not take their vehicle out during the peak traffic hours. If a school bus carries 50 students, it means there are far lesser vehicles on the road.

11. Better Environment

When there is less number of vehicles on road, the emissions from vehicles are also reduced. Vehicle emissions include dangerous gases such as carbon monoxide, which has severe negative effect on the environment.

As school buses make it unnecessary for parents to transport students to and from schools, a significantly lower number of cars are there on the road, reducing the overall carbon footprint drastically. Thus, school buses contribute to a better environment.

12. Lower Accident Rate

Many studies over the years have repeatedly stated that school buses have a significantly lower number of accidents on road compared to students travelling by cars.

So, if you have been confused about hiring services of a school bus for your kid, then now with these benefits listed above you know how you and your little one can benefit from the school bus and why you should also hire one for your kid.

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Impact of Anti-Collision Technology on School Buses

School bus transportation ensures the safety of school kids. Nevertheless, parents tend to have a certitude in the school transportation services, when compared to the private transportation services. By integrating technology to the school bus, you will be able to enhance the school bus safety of students.

Accidents cannot be avoided completely, but it can be prevented. As a consequence, the anti-collision technology can be such a technology that enables you to prevent the fatal accidents. Of course, drivers will be unable to control vehicle speed and avoid harsh braking in today’s rising traffic.

Merit of Anti-Collision Technology

With the assistance of the anti-collision technology, the vehicle will sense the hazard from a far-off distance, and stops the vehicle at the right time. Drivers are not required to apply the brake, as the anti-collision system will perform the job for you.

Highlights of Anti-collision Technology

  • Extended range proximity sensors

The proximity sensors will have sensing range 3 times the standard sensors. As a result, the collision rate will be reduced by diverting your vehicle away from the crash zones. In case of cylindrical-type inductive sensors, the sensor range is from 0.8 to 15 mm. Hence, the exact separation between the target and the sensor should be lower than 12 mm.

As a matter of fact, when sensors are placed closer to the moving target, it will increase the destruction percentage caused by physical contact. A sensor that alters or vibrates from the original position will suffer increased damage due to collision. Hence, extended range sensors reduce the circumstance of damage.

  • Infra-red sensors surrounding the vehicle

With the support of an infrared sensor, you will be able to recognize certain attributes of surroundings by either transmitting or identifying the infrared radiation. Moreover, the IR sensors enable you to measure the heat transmitted by an object and discover its motion. As a consequence, the IR sensors work by utilizing a specific light sensor, which enable you to realize the light wavelength in the IR spectrum. Along with an LED that generate light with the similar wavelength, you can realize the intensity of the received light.

Furthermore, IR sensors detect the obstacles that lie in front or side wise and alter its position depending upon the field.

Collision Mitigation System in School Transportation

Of course, school buses are designed for the safety of students. Hence, the driver confronts an immense risk and pressure as they are ferrying the precious cargo in the universe- the future generation. Collision mitigation systems can act as an insurance for ensuring the student safety. By installing the system, you will be able to evade the careless accidents and injuries. Exclaiming how? The system stops the vehicle without the assistance of drivers, if they sense danger ahead.

Can cost impede the installation of anti-collision technology on school buses?

Meanwhile, school transportation services will be allotted a limited amount of money. As a result, installing the anti-collision technology will be expensive for school authorities. According to the sources, the collision mitigation system cost ranges from $2100 to $6800, which varies according to the manufacturer and the level of technology.

One of the major anti-collision technology suppliers is Bendix, apart from that, Meritor WABCO is another key supplier of the system. However, its OnGuard systems have been utilized in around 180 commercial vehicles. In fact, with the implementation of technology, it is reported to have 75% to 87% reduction in collisions and 89% reduction in accident expenses.

As a matter of fact, installing the anti-collision technology in vehicles can be beneficial in every way, since it prevents the collisions caused by negligent motorists, who is unable to notice the enormous yellow bus.

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Dubai Taxi Corporation Introduced Smart Buses with Latest Technologies

 

Dubai Taxi Corporation (DTC) introduced smart buses with latest technologies. DTC took this initiative for making school transport service of the Dubai government excellent and safe. It has been reported that about 3000 students from eight schools participated in the service.

Read also:

                New Issues Emerges Over School Bus Safety in Abu Dhabi

Mohammed Said Al Dhuhori, who is the Director of DTC's School Transport, said that new buses will be installed with surveillance cameras, which is connected to monitors of the DTC's Control Center.

The cameras can track each and every movement of student activities, including sitting and descending from the school bus. Also, he added that buses will be fitted with GPS tracking system which gives instant notification to and from school to parents.

For more safety, every school buses have also fitted a switch, which needs to be disabled by driver whenever the bus stops. This helps drivers  to check whether students have left the school bus.

Al Dhuhori added that, for getting this school bus transport service, one can either dial DTC's Customer Service Center number 042080555 or visit any school's customer service staff. He also informed that smart buses have been chosen as the bus that obey various guidelines issued by the Public Transport Agency and world's highest school transportation service.

Source

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15 Splendid Ways to Reduce Fuel Cost [For School Buses]

To run any institution, fuel cost is about 30% of the total cost. So it is high time to think seriously about ways to manage fuel cost. It is a common need for every institution.

If we gave proper attention and took necessary precautions, we will be able to reduce school bus fuel cost to an extent. There are advanced technologies such as GPS School Bus Tracking systems to reduce fuel cost.

Here are some effective methods to reduce fuel cost:

1. Educate the Drivers: Make them realize that they can make a big difference in reducing the cost of fuel consumption. Let them know that reducing the amount of fuel consumption will ensure their job security and provide a better environment.

You must teach them how their driving has a major role in reducing fuel consumption cost.

2. Monitor the Route before Starting the Trip: Having a clear idea of your assigned route will help you to minimize the gear changes which results in reducing fuel consumption cost.

With the help of school bus tracking system, the driver can get a clear picture of the route which makes the driving easy. And also it helps the drivers to take the shortest path by avoiding blocks and all.

3. Speed Limits: Over speeding have several negative impacts on your vehicle’s engine and fuel cost. And moreover, it increases the risk of accidents. With the help of school bus tracking apps, you can get instant notification if the bus is running in over speed.

4. Lessen the Number of Gear Changes: Reduce the number of gear changes by thoroughly studying the routes and traffic with the help of school bus tracking system. Too much gear changes will drastically increase the consumption of fuel.

5. Avoid Overfilling: Don’t overfill the fuel tank as it can create fuel wastage. Filling fuel up to the edge of the fuel tank will easily cause overflow when the fuel gets heated either by sun or fuel return by the engine.

Thus, overfilling is dangerous as well as can cause fuel wastage which results in reducing unwanted fuel consumption cost.

6. Keep the Tires Inflated Properly: School bus tires should be inflated properly. Properly inflated tires can reduce the risk of accidents and extends the life of tire. It also improves fuel economy. So, before you start a trip, ensure that the tires are inflated properly.

7. Avoid Unwanted Idling: Surplus idling can consume a huge amount of fuel within a short span of time. With the help of fleet tracking with GPS, you can monitor and control unnecessary idling. This is also a good way of reducing the amount of fuel consumption and thus cost.

8. Do Proper Maintenance: You should maintain the vehicle properly as avoiding regular maintenance can affect your vehicle’s mileage. Proper and routine maintenance can make your bus the most fuel efficient school bus.

9. Make Use of Telecommunication Technologies: You can stop the use of school bus in any route if the student whose pickup point is on that route is on leave that day.

It can be done by informing the driver with the help of Driver Console App integrated with the school bus tracking system. This can reduce fuel consumption.

10. Reduce Wind Resistance: Don’t keep bags on the top of the bus instead keep all the bags inside the school bus. Keeping on the top can reduce the fuel efficiency by creating resistance to the wind flow. So, avoiding this can save a huge amount of fuel consumption.

11. Be ready in Advance for the Morning Trip: Before stopping the bus after the trip, do the necessary things required for the next trip. So that you don’t have to do a lot of planning before starting the trip with a cold engine as it can have lot of fuel consumption.

12. Lessen the Time Spend on Road: If possible set up a carpool system with co-workers. Limit the amount of unwanted trips as if you want to go nearby place then prefer walking. This can reduce unwanted fuel consumption.

13. No Personal Use: If you are school bus driver, then use the school bus for school purposes only not for your personal use. Avoiding personal use can also reduce fuel consumption and thus your bus can be fuel efficient school bus.

14. Lessen the Number of Bus Used: Operating more number of buses require more fuel and maintenance as compared to other vehicles.

By lessening the number of buses used can reduce a considerable amount of fuel consumption and its cost. This can be done through effective planning.

15. Try Different Fuels: Trying out different fuels is also a way to save money as some fuels are proficient but some are less expensive.

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