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Articles/News - School Bus Maintenance

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TRP releases new parts catalog
April 1, 2013
The TRP Bus Parts catalog includes all-makes TRP aftermarket parts for school buses, motorcoaches and transit buses, in addition to name brand parts available from manufacturers such as Meritor, Bendix, Eaton, Webb and Leece-Neville. It can be downloaded from TRP’s website in a fully illustrated electronic format.
SoundOff offers rectangular LEDs for school buses
March 21, 2013
The new LEDs are available as back-up, park/turn and stop/tail/turn lights. Company officials say that the LEDs offer enhanced light output and off-angle visibility.
New mobile column lift suited for school buses
March 19, 2013
The MCH413 is smaller than Rotary Lift’s other Mach mobile column lifts — about a foot shorter and 150 lbs. lighter — and has a rated capacity of 13,000 lbs. per column. As a result, it also has a lower price.
New school bus inspector hired in Iowa
March 15, 2013
Joe Funk takes over duties for inspecting school buses in the western region of the state. He joins inspector Verlan Vos and replaces Owen Freese, who recently retired from the position. A school bus inspection fee increase that is awaiting final approval will allow the Iowa Department of Education to hire one more inspector.
How to make the most of technician training
March 12, 2013

Tech-to-tech instruction and partnering with neighboring school districts for training exercises provide easy opportunities to develop employees’ skills and knowledge. Having good equipment and taking advantage of resources available through state pupil transportation associations are also worthwhile.

Maine school bus damaged in fire
February 21, 2013
No one is injured in the blaze, but the Portland Public Schools bus sustains an estimated $35,000 in damage. The district says that an employee was patching the bus' seats using tape, liquid vinyl and a heat gun when the fire began.
Thomas Built releases details on 2013 technician training
February 20, 2013
Thomas Built Institute sessions will be held May 7-10 in Greensboro, N.C., and July 23-26 in Reno, Nev. Topics to be covered include emissions systems, advanced electrical, coolant, maintenance and cost savings, and utilizing websites, resources and wire diagrams.
Washington district maintains bus inspection success streak
February 19, 2013
For the 15th consecutive year, Highline Public Schools’ transportation department earns outstanding marks from the Washington State Patrol on its school bus safety inspection. Each year, the patrol conducts one scheduled inspection and one unannounced inspection.
Iowa bus inspection fee to increase, pending governor approval
February 5, 2013
The state Board of Education approves the proposal to increase the fee from $28 to $40, which will enable the state to hire an additional school bus inspector. As the change awaits approval from the office of the governor, state pupil transportation director Max Christensen tells SBF that “the increase is vitally important to keeping a viable school bus inspection process in the state of Iowa.”
New serviceable LED lighting line from ULTRALED
January 25, 2013
The Heavy Duty Bus Parts division offers the LED lights in single and double contact bulbs, in addition to clearance light bulbs. The new lights were field-tested at Willis (Texas) Independent School District.
Zonar to launch fleet management conference
January 17, 2013
The provider of fleet telematics, remote diagnostics and mobile onboard computing will launch THE ZONE 2013 from May 14 to 16 in San Antonio. Officials say that the fleet management conference will offer renowned industry speakers covering strategic transportation topics.
Laser vehicle spotting guide helps with proper staging
January 17, 2013
The Spotline laser from Rotary Lift projects a green line directly in the center of the bay, and the technician can then center the line on the vehicle hood and dash while pulling in for accurate positioning. A retrofit kit that’s now available enables the Spotline to be compatible with most inground and surface lifts.
American Utility Metals rebrands as Crompion Intl.
January 15, 2013
Officials say that the name change comes as the stainless steel producer works to expand its global presence and its focus on creating solutions through new services and additional metallurgists on staff. The company supplies Cromgard, a high-performance, low-nickel stainless steel, for bus manufacturing and other industries.
Cold weather puts districts’ buses out of service
January 15, 2013
Salt Lake City School District and Jordan (Utah) School District are among the school systems impacted by the low temperature on Monday. At Jordan School District, 30 buses wouldn’t start — officials say the batteries wouldn’t hold a charge and diesel fuel was gelling.
ACT offers new a/c skirt condensers
January 11, 2013
Bus air-conditioning supplier American Cooling Technology's new condensers provide a universal mounting pattern that provides flexibility to select the best bolt pattern for the specific vehicle. In other news, the company names Jason Verdier to a new position of parts sales and distribution manager.
Onspot celebrates 25 years in business
January 3, 2013
The company thanks the OEMs, dealers, national account customers and end users for their business over the years. Onspot’s automatic tire chains allow the operator to engage and disengage tire chains at the flip of a switch to enhance traction and reduce stopping distance in snow and ice.
South Carolina updates aging fleet with 342 new buses
January 2, 2013
The state, which owns its school bus fleet, makes its first purchase of new school buses since 2008. They will replace models as old as 1984. State Superintendent Mick Zais calls the move “the first step in modernizing the nation’s oldest school bus fleet.”
Veteran Iowa school bus inspector retires
January 2, 2013
Owen Freese, a longtime inspector with the Iowa Department of Education, stepped down from his post on Dec. 31. He will now serve as executive director of the Iowa Pupil Transportation Association.
Mechanic injured while working on school bus, later dies
December 17, 2012
The San Diego County Medical Examiner’s Office reports that John Friedas Joaquin Jr. was on an interstate repairing the disabled bus when a vehicle lost control and struck the rear of the bus, pinning Joaquin in the engine compartment. He is transported to a hospital where he undergoes surgery, but he ultimately passes away due to extensive blood loss from his injuries.
Ore. state director Steven Huillet to retire
November 30, 2012
During his tenure at the Oregon Department of Education, Huillet has worked on key developments to enhance school bus maintenance and safety, including a certification program for technicians to conduct annual inspections.

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