Maintenance

South Carolina updates aging fleet with 342 new buses

Thomas McMahon
Posted on January 2, 2013
South Carolina State Superintendent Mick Zais called a new bus purchase “the first step in modernizing the nation’s oldest school bus fleet.”

South Carolina State Superintendent Mick Zais called a new bus purchase “the first step in modernizing the nation’s oldest school bus fleet.”

COLUMBIA, S.C. — South Carolina has made its first purchase of new school buses since 2008, officials announced last week.

The state, which owns its school bus fleet, has received the first deliveries of the new buses, State Superintendent of Education Mick Zais said in a press conference on Thursday.

After all deliveries are completed, 342 new school buses, equipped to transport students with and without disabilities, will be in service in state-owned bus shops across South Carolina.

“Transporting students safely to and from school is a priority for the Department [of Education] and school districts,” Zais said. “These buses are more fuel efficient, less expensive to maintain, and are equipped to transport students with disabilities. Today marks the first step in modernizing the nation’s oldest school bus fleet.”

The new school buses will replace all buses from model years 1984, ’85, ’86 and ’87, as well as some ’88 models. Each bus cost $82,030, and the South Carolina Department of Education spent a total of $28,054,260 from lottery revenues, general fund carry-forward revenues and revenues from the sale of scrap metal from decommissioned school buses.

The state’s new school buses (as pictured above) will replace old buses (as pictured below) from model years 1984-88.
The state’s new school buses (as pictured above) will replace old buses (as pictured below) from model years 1984-88.
Zais thanked the state’s General Assembly for prioritizing funds for school bus procurement in the past two state budgets. Of the total funds spent, 88% ($24,567,000) was appropriated from unclaimed lottery prize funds and excess lottery revenues in fiscal years 2011-12 and 2012-13.

Zais has reportedly supported and requested funding for school bus procurement during his tenure as state superintendent of education. He also requested $34 million for school bus purchases in fiscal year 2013-14.

“Today is an example of how elected officials from different political parties can come together and work towards a solution,” Zais said. “South Carolina didn’t earn the distinction of operating the oldest bus fleet in the nation overnight, and this issue won’t be fixed overnight.

“State government has heard the concerns of students and parents about the age of the school bus fleet, and today is a tangible milestone as we work towards resolving this issue in the years ahead.”


Other articles on school bus replacement:

Aging fleets: How do we compete for resources?

Barker Bus to turn over fleet every 5 years

Related Topics: school bus replacement, South Carolina

Thomas McMahon Executive Editor
Comments ( 9 )
  • C2'S

     | about 2 years ago

    Its ashamed how south carolina cannot afford newer buses and we have to ride on those pieces of junk, when the mvp er goes to the shop, it takes days and maybe weeks for them to come back out, south Carolina dept of edu, u need to try and get someone else to take over and buy our buses bc you aren't doing a good enough job and the funny thing about it, my district only got 2 of those 2014 66 pass c2's and 1 of those handicaps, I wish I could at least live somewhere else and ride something MORE NEATER...

  • See all comments
More Stories
Auto Safety House, the Thomas Built Buses dealer for Arizona, will operate as a brand of W.W. Williams. Seen here is a W.W. Williams service center.
News

W.W. Williams Acquires Auto Safety House

Auto Safety House, the Thomas Built Buses dealership for Arizona, will operate as a brand under the ownership of W.W. Williams, a provider of repair services and products.

Product

Portable Child Restraint

HSM Transportation Solutions’ C.E. White Portable Child Restraint for school buses, a five-point restraint system, is designed to accommodate children weighing 20 to 90 pounds and up to 57 inches in height.

Product

2-Camera System

The DS2 is a two-camera vehicle event recording system that combines high-definition video recording, fleet telematics, and vehicle operating data on one screen for better incident review and driver coaching.

Four dealers won IC Bus’ 2016 Diamond Premier Dealer award, while 11 won the Diamond Dealer award.
News

IC Bus Honors Top Dealers for 2016

Four dealers win the bus manufacturer’s Diamond Premier Dealer award, while 11 win the Diamond Dealer award. IC Bus also bestows its Pursuit of Excellence award.

Video

VIDEO: BusWise Efficiency Features

BusWise Technologies for Thomas Built Buses' Saf-T-Liner C2 school bus offers features that can help in boosting efficiency, such as tracking location, speed, and fuel consumption.

Be the First to Know

Get the latest news and most popular articles from SBF delivered straight to your inbox. Stay on top of the school bus industry and don't miss a thing!