DATTCO Inc. has added Connecticut's first electric school bus, a Collins Type A All-Electric, to its fleet. - Photo courtesy DATTCO

DATTCO Inc. has added Connecticut's first electric school bus, a Collins Type A All-Electric, to its fleet.

Photo courtesy DATTCO

New Britain, Connecticut-based bus dealership and transportation company DATTCO Inc. has added the state’s first electric school bus to its fleet.

DATTCO received the Collins Type A All-Electric school bus in late summer and just began operating it to serve Middletown Public Schools, Eliza Baron, a spokesperson for the transportation company, told School Bus Fleet.

The electric bus utilizes Motiv Power Systems Electric Powered Intelligent Chassis (EPIC), and is based on the Ford E-450 platform. The system’s battery packs are validated by millions of real-world miles, according to a news release from Collins and DATTCO. Sodium nickel batteries work in a series, which means if one runs out of power, another will take over.

Collins’s electric buses can offer up to 85% in operating and maintenance savings as well as a structural design that can provide additional safety, according to DATTCO and the school bus manufacturer.

“With over 50 years in the school bus industry, Collins Bus is committed to providing world-class safety and quality standards including innovation in electric school bus transportation,” said Chris Hiebert, vice president and general manager of Collins Bus, in the news release.

DATTCO is using a Clipper Creek CS-100 charging station for the bus, Baron told SBF.

“DATTCO prides itself on being a leader in the industry, so we are excited to be one of the first dealerships in New England to offer this vehicle,” said Don DeVivo, DATTCO’s president, in the news release. “This is another step towards a future of alternative fuel in the school bus industry and a cleaner environment for everyone.”

The transportation company received funding through the Volkswagen (VW) settlement to purchase the bus, Baron said.

Some of DATTCO’s school contracts have started to express interest in alternative-fuel buses, she added. The dealership and transportation company also has 55 propane school buses in its fleet.

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