Earlier this month, team members from Proterra brought one of their electric buses by our office for a demonstration. Omnitrans employees were invited to tour the bus and learn about the advantages it had to offer.
When looking at the typical cost of operating a fleet, numbers are impressive. According to the Proterra website, CNG buses typically get 3.27 MPG and cost approximately 71 cents per mile, while the electric bus gets 20.8 miles MPGe and costs about about 19 cents per mile.
With 30% fewer parts, less maintenance is also required on the electric bus. There is no exhaust, no oil, no liquid fuels and 75% fewer brake repairs—all of which add up to savings over time.
The biggest downside of the electric bus is that it can only run for 30 miles before requiring a charge from a rapid charging station. It takes about 5 minutes to totally recharge the vehicle.
Is there a place for an electric bus on the Omnitrans fleet in the future?
“At this time we’re putting together a scope of work to have buses replaced,” said Director of Maintenance Jack Dooley. “We don’t know if electric buses will be part of that plan or not. Right now we’re just interested in gathering information on what options are available to us.”
Visit us on Flickr for more photos from the Proterra electric bus demonstration at Omnitrans!