FREMONT, Ohio — A year after the first district in Ohio bought school buses made by Lion Bus, several more districts in the state have placed orders for the Canadian-built Type C bus.
Marion City Schools in central Ohio just received two Lion 360 buses. Marion utilized the 42-inch seat option, as did Fremont City Schools in northern Ohio, which recently took delivery of two Lion units. Marion also opted for bigger storage compartments on its Lion models.
“Obviously the main advantage is cost savings,” Marion Transportation Supervisor Ann Eckard said of the Lion 360. “It’s lighter, so there’s the fuel savings. And it’s the bus that won’t rust. We will get more miles and years out of a Lion bus.”
Bobby’s Truck and Bus Repair became the exclusive Lion Bus dealer in Ohio about a year ago. Bedford City School District was the first district in the state to purchase Lion school buses. Bedford recently ordered two more Lion buses for delivery this month.
“Since we’ve only had them a year, we have yet to reap the benefits of Lion’s composite, no-rust bodies,” said Patrick Carney, Bedford’s supervisor of transportation. “Enough to say we have three-year-old buses that are already rusting. We spend so much money to repair rust every year, so we’re looking forward to the savings of having a bus body that will go four, five, even 10 years without a rusting issue.”
This year, Lion Bus introduced a wheelchair-accessible version of the Lion 360 utilizing the Braun Century 2 wheelchair lift. Huber Heights (Ohio) City Schools is reportedly the first district in the U.S. to order a wheelchair-accessible unit from Lion Bus. The district has also ordered additional Lion units.
Meanwhile, Vanguard-Sentinel Career and Technology Centers in Fremont has also ordered a Lion bus and is awaiting delivery.