José E. Rodriguez, president and CEO of Transporte Sonnell, poses with one of the company's new Trans Tech small buses.
COROZAL, Puerto Rico — This year, Transporte Sonnell acquired 40 new small buses, replacing older buses in its fleet.
The new Trans Tech Bus units will be used in serving around 4,000 to 5,000 special-education students.
Transporte Sonnell officials said that the purchase is groundbreaking for the island territory of the U.S.
"We are the first school bus contractor company that brought new buses here in Puerto Rico," Hernan Burgos, vice president of operations, told SBF.
Burgos added that the new buses, with their more efficient and cleaner burning engines, are part of Transporte Sonnell's efforts to make its operation more green. The company also hopes to secure a grant to help acquire some electric school buses — the Trans Tech eTrans.
Overall, Transporte Sonnell has a fleet of 325 school buses and transports 11,000 students daily.
The company is ranked No. 35 in SCHOOL BUS FLEET's Top 50 Contractors of 2012, which will appear in the July issue of the magazine.