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March 01, 2002  |   Comments (0)   |   Post a comment

Yellow Buses Invade Britain

FirstGroup begins pilot project with U.S.-style school buses


About 125 children in Yorkshire, England, began riding two yellow buses to and from school in mid-February as part of a pilot project to test the effectiveness of American-style school transportation in Britain. The transit-style school buses, manufactured by Blue Bird Corp. in Fort Valley, Ga., are among 100 that have been delivered to England to help reduce pollution and congestion across the U.K. “We are anticipating that today's initiative will reduce the number of cars on the school run in this part of [Yorkshire] by some 45,000 to 50,000 a year,” said FirstGroup CEO Moir Lockhead. FirstGroup, the parent company of First Student Inc., is the operator of the buses. Transportation experts estimate that 20 percent of morning rush-hour traffic in Britain is attributable to parents driving their children to school. The buses currently used for school runs in England are generally older vehicles that contribute to a growing air quality problem. The buses — Blue Bird rear-engine All Americans — feature right-hand drive and left-hand service doors.

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