Students of Los Angeles Unified School District, the second largest school district in the United States, are the beneficiaries of a long-term replacement strategy to operate cleaner buses. The next stage of fleet upgrade was marked this week by the purchase of 71 Saf-T-Liner® C2 CNG school buses from Thomas Built Buses. Thomas Built’s Saf-T-Liner C2 CNG is the first Type C compressed natural gas bus in the industry.
With the purchase of these new buses, LA Unified becomes the latest in a growing number of districts incorporate Type C CNG school buses in its fleet.
Today, LA Unified operates 1,300 school buses, more than half of which run on alternative fuel, which includes 475 CNG, 100 ultra-low emission and 126 propane buses. The district has the largest fleet of CNG-powered school buses in the United States and operates CNG fueling stations in Gardena and Sun Valley.
“Together, Thomas Built Buses and LA Unified are making history,” said Caley Edgerly, president and CEO of Thomas Built Buses. “LA Unified has made great strides over the past few years by incorporating alternative fueled vehicles into their fleet. The addition of Thomas Built’s Saf-T-Liner C2 CNG school buses paves the way for other school districts to deploy Type C CNG buses into their own fleets. LA Unified trusts CNG, and we are proud that they’ve chosen Thomas Built Buses as their supplier.”
The new Saf-T-Liner C2 CNG utilizes the Cummins Westport ISB6.7 G 6.7 liter natural gas engine and an Allison 2000 series transmission. It is CARB-certified, meets ARB’s optional low oxides of nitrogen (NOx) standard of 0.1g/bhp-hr and meets EPA 2016 emissions and 2017 EPA greenhouse gas (GHG) requirements.
Thomas Built introduced its first compressed natural gas bus nearly 20 years ago, and since then CNG has grown in popularity due to an abundant domestic supply and stable fuel costs. Today, Thomas Built offers the new Saf-T-Liner C2 CNG, along with other green fuel options including the Saf-T-Liner® HDX CNG and Minotour® CNG,.
Thomas Built Buses, Inc., headquartered in High Point, N.C., is a subsidiary of Daimler Trucks North America LLC.