Caught Green Handed: Plainview to Get Electric Busses
March 1, 2012 § Leave a comment
The Plainview-Old Bethpage School District’s transportation vendor, We Transport, recently introduced a new fully electric school bus at district headquarters as part of their ongoing initiative to reduce their carbon footprint. The bus is part of a new generation of zero-emission electric and hybrid-electric models that are slowly making their way into school districts across the country. Plainview will be the first school district on Long Island to begin the transition to fully electric school buses, incorporating several of these buses into their regular fleet beginning Fall 2012.
“This is a step forward. Getting to and from school is going to be healthier for the students, the drivers and the community” said Nadine Eiring, the district’s director of health, safety and transportation.
While electric vehicles such as these typically sell at over $30,000 more than their gas-powered counterparts, the district will not be bearing these costs. Plainview-Old Bethpage Central School District is currently in a five-year contract with We Transport-Towne Bus Corp., who plan on gradually adding the new buses to the District’s fleet over the next few years.
School buses make frequent stops, cover short distances, and spend most of the day off the road – making them perfect to be converted to electric. Although frequent stops are wasteful in a traditional gas-powered bus, electric models can actually use the energy created by applying brakes to recharge their batteries. Each bus will take six to eight hours to recharge, with the ability to do so virtually anywhere.These new commercial vehicles are all-electric and produce zero emissions, with operating costs that are significantly lower than comparable diesel vehicles. The average school bus uses more than 1,700 gallons of fuel per year, according to Illinois-based IC Bus, one of the country’s largest school bus manufacturers. The electric buses will carry up to 42 students at a time next school year.