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January 14, 2014  |   Comments (0)   |   Post a comment

NAPT trade show: buses, components and more

New offerings that were on view and introduced during the show in Grand Rapids, Mich., include an all-electric school bus, a wheelchair retractor tie-down system, heater kits, LED lights and fleet management solutions.

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Espar introduces school bus heater kits
Espar Heater Systems unveiled its E-Guardian PLUS heater kits for school bus applications. The E-Guardian PLUS 12 kW kit comes with the M-II heater, which includes up to six operating speeds. The E-Guardian PLUS 5 kW kit includes Espar’s Hydronic D5 heater with the highest top-end heat delivery available, officials said. Each E-Guardian PLUS Series package includes Espar’s Multi-Max controller with PC-programmable features, including automatic run times and a skip scheduler, allowing management to select holiday and vacation days.

Espar Heater Systems

Blue Bird, Synovia Solutions launch fleet management system

Blue Bird Corp. and Synovia Solutions have partnered to offer Blue Bird Connect, a GPS fleet management system. Officials said customers can now order new Blue Bird school buses from the factory with Blue Bird Connect, and it can be upfitted to an existing fleet. The system offers core functionality, including comparative analysis, student tracking, a parent portal, safety reporting, engine diagnostics and fuel economy tracking. Blue Bird Connect also includes unique features, such as integrated driver time and attendance with planned versus actual comparisons.

Blue Bird Corp.
Synovia Solutions

IC Bus unit with Cummins ISB debuts
IC Bus unveiled its CE Series school bus with the Cummins ISB 6.7-liter engine. The OEM announced in September that it would offer the ISB in its CE Series buses and began taking orders in October. This is the first IC Bus school bus with selective catalytic reduction emissions aftertreatment. The CE Series now offers a selection of three mid-range diesel engines: the MaxxForce 7, MaxxForce DT and Cummins ISB6.7.

IC Bus

Restraint features behind-the-seat connections
E-Z-On Products Inc. of Florida’s new “Houdini-proof” MAX Vest, designed specifically for school bus use, will hold a child securely in place until he or she reaches their final destination, according to company officials. The vest features a seat buckle that is designed to lock easily, an adjustable zipper fitting and a below-seat safety hook. Additionally, all connections are located behind the seat so “curious fingers” can’t loosen them, company officials said.

E-Z-On Products Inc. of Florida

Retractor meets WC18 standard
Q’Straint has released a new wheelchair retractor tie-down system that meets the higher-strength requirements of WC18 that take effect in December 2015. Company officials said that the QRT-360 is the first four-point, heavy-duty, fully automatic retractable tie-down system built to perform successfully in a 30-mph frontal crash when the user of a powered wheelchair is traveling in a motor vehicle while using a commercially available crashworthy lap belt that must be used in the frontal-impact test conducted of wheelchairs under WC19. (See story here for more on the WC18 and WC19 standards.)


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