Past Event Coverage
Impco & RO for 80 in Las Vegas
The Regional Transportation Commission of Southern Nevada – aka Las Vegas RTC – is talking up delivery of 80 compressed natural gas-fueled paratransit buses by a local dealer, RO Bus Sales. They are the first of 400 CNG buses to be delivered through 2017, assuming all options are exercised under a $7.67 million contract.
“No one has ever up-fitted a paratransit vehicle this size (27-feet long) with this configuration and fuel capacity,” said RO Bus GM Bobby Bracken.
RO worked with Impco Automotive (Booth 3457) on the Ford E-450 chassis vehicles, which have 6.8-liter gaseous prep engines. The chassis were bodied by Glaval Bus (6051) in Indiana, Bracken says, then driven on gasoline to Union City, Ind., where Impco removed the gasoline tanks and installed the dedicated-CNG fuel system with fuel cylinders by Hexagon Lincoln (3655).
“To meet RTC standards for fuel capacity equivalent to its 55-gallon gasoline tanks, RO worked with the bus manufacturer and CNG upfitter to configure two tanks vertically in rear compartments of the unit (a third tank is under the bus) to provide the required rear passenger exit,” said RTC.
The result is a bus with a CNG capacity of 60 GGE – gasoline gallon equivalents.
RO completed the vehicles in Las Vegas, installing such RTC-mandated equipment as methane detectors. The buses also feature defueling ports “to allow one unit to refuel another, instead of sending a CNG fuel truck or towing the unit off its route,” RTC says, noting that RO Bus added six full-time employees, including a project planner, production foreman, installers and two service technicians.
“RTC has elevated our bar and is committed to working with local businesses. They’re ahead of the game with advancing technology and open to whatever we can do to better support them,” said RO’s Bracken.