School Bus Contractors

2 school bus contractors win grants for Zonar equipment

Posted on January 25, 2016

BONITA SPRINGS, Fla. — Two school bus contractors will receive up to $50,000 each for fleet technology hardware as recipients of the Don Carnahan Memorial Grant.

Technology provider Zonar and the National School Transportation Association (NSTA) announced the grant winners on Monday during NSTA’s Midwinter Meeting in Bonita Springs.

The recipients are NSTA members Sunrise Transportation and Minnesota Coaches. Zonar will provide the two contractors with fleet management solutions that offer real-time tracking, maintenance and inspection verification, and idling and speed monitoring.

"We are excited to continue to partner with Zonar on this grant opportunity," NSTA President Todd Monteferrario said. "The grant better affords our member contractors access to valuable tools to improve operations and keep them at the forefront of the industry's best practices."

The grant recipients will be awarded Zonar’s 2010 handheld or 2020 tablet, which includes Electronic Verified Inspection Reporting (EVIR); GPS V3; real-time engine diagnostic reporting; student tracking (Z Pass); and Ground Traffic Control web-based software.

"We are thrilled to provide Sunrise Transportation and Minnesota Coaches with technology solutions to help increase the safety of their vehicles and provide real-time information fleet management, driver operating behavior and student ridership," said H. Kevin Mest, senior vice president of business development for Zonar. "I look forward to working with them and sharing their success stories."

The award, previously known as the Zonar/NSTA Grant, has been renamed the Don Carnahan Memorial Grant in recognition of Carnahan’s contributions to the student transportation industry.

For more information on the grant, go here.

Related Topics: efficiency, GPS, inspections, NSTA, school bus security, software systems

Comments ( 1 )
  • golfer

     | about 5 years ago

    Since our school district has used Zonar for the past 6 years, as a driver, I can assure you it's not what it's beefed up to be. It's expensive and used to frame the driver for everything. One example is that we looked up a bus location the was on a field trip to see where it was. The Zonar GPS showed it going 80 MPH. It was on a 2 lane road near an Interstate. I have personally driven that bus many times, and top speed is 70MPH, as it has a governor. As far as ZPass goes (which we have since we got sold a bill of goods), it works sometime but is a waste of money for high school kids as they don't really need them, but does help for elementary kids. The big problem is that the cheap tags they use break or get lost, and you are constantly replacing them at a school district cost of about $5-$6 each. What could go wrong with a 3rd grader trying to keep track of their bus tag even when it's attached with a cable tie to their backpack??!!!! I saw an article where a school district in Rockford, Illinois ended up dumping the whole system completely after using it for a year or 2 because it was too much hassle to try to keep up with making new bus tags and the expense was getting too high. The good thing is that the employee for the school district that pushed this option only spent $350,000 of taxpayer money for a system they aborted, and thank God he still has a job! Try to explain this blunder to me if I were a corporation rather than a taxing body!!! Looking for a job maybe? Not if you're employed as a higher up in a school district, so they wasted $350,000, and no one wants to pay the drivers more? Here are a few links; Here's another; You need to read both articles! One counters the other!!

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