ORLAND PARK, Ill. — Orland School District 135’s transportation contract with Cook-Illinois Corp. includes 79 new Blue Bird Vision Propane buses, which are expected to lower the district’s carbon footprint while reducing operating costs.
The propane-powered buses make up 80% of the fleet that transports the district’s students.
“Cook-Illinois subsidiary American School Bus Company won the bid for our regular-education bus services for the 2016-17 school year,” said Jerry Hughes, director of risk management and safety for Orland School District. “They presented the benefits of propane-fueled buses that really appealed to us.”
Among those benefits, Hughes cited the propane buses’ better cold weather starts, ability to heat up fast, and the removal of diesel fumes around the students and community.
The new Blue Bird Vision Propane buses are expected to reduce nitrogen oxide emissions by more than 98,000 pounds and particulate matter by almost 2,500 pounds each year compared with the diesel buses that they replaced. The buses are equipped with Ford’s 6.8L V10 engine and powered by a ROUSH CleanTech propane fuel system.
Thomas O’Sullivan, president of contracts and bids for Cook-Illinois, said that all of the company’s subsidiaries will eventually have propane buses available. He added that routine maintenance is quick, and the company’s 165 Blue Bird Vision Propane and Micro Bird Propane buses run efficiently in any type of weather.
Also, Cook-Illinois has deployed 25 new Blue Bird Vision Gasoline buses for area school districts.
To read more about Cook-Illinois’ fleet and fuel choices, see this feature from the November issue of SBF.