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School Bus Maintenance: Controlling Costs

When it comes to the costs of a school bus fleet, fuel is usually the number one line item - but school bus maintenance costs are rarely far behind. Buses can be expensive to maintain but, of course, it's absolutely necessary to keep the buses running safely and on schedule.

Maintenance costs will always be needed, but they can often be reduced. Here are some tips for getting your ongoing costs-of-ownership as low as possible.

Creating a School Bus Maintenance Policy: Five Tips

One might say that there are three "pillars" of a safe and successful school bus transportation system. You need great drivers, as well as safety-minded riders. However, what can occasionally be overlooked is the importance of maintenance. A bus is only as reliable as its last maintenance check, and sometimes, it becomes easy for a district to skimp on school bus maintenance - particularly if budgets are becoming tight.

However, this isn't an area where corners can be cut! So in today's article, we want to talk about elements that should be in everyone's school bus maintenance plan.

School Bus Maintenance: Considering Emissions

If you are investigating the possibility of upgrading your bus fleet to use alternative fuel systems, you have a lot of choices. Green fuels can potentially lower the emissions of your school buses, which in turn can reduce school bus maintenance costs; but that depends on which emissions they reduce. Often, buyers focus solely on NOx (nitrogen oxide) but there’s more to the story than that.

8 Facts About the EPA's School Bus Rebate Program

The EPA receives a grant of approximately $7,000,000 which will be used in a school bus rebate program, encouraging districts to upgrade older diesel buses. These buses contribute huge amounts of CO2 and NOX to the atmosphere, so it's in everyone's interests to get them off the road or to replace their engines with newer models.

If your district is considering bus upgrades, but don't quite have the money, this could be a major opportunity. The submission period for 2017 has passed, but it's time to act if you want to have a chance of getting some of those rebate funds for the 2018-2019 school year.

School Bus Maintenance: An Analysis of Costs

School buses transport millions of students each day to and from schools and special activities. During an average school year, around 10 billion student trips are made. Buses come in many designs and capacities and different districts have varying requirements regarding the age that each bus should be in service. Both of these factors, along with the size of your fleet, influence the total cost of school bus maintenance for your district.

5 Ways to Optimize Vehicle Lift Safety

School bus maintenance is vital for keeping students safe on the road, but ensuring that maintenance staff stays safe should also be a top priority. It’s estimated that over 15,000 accidents leading to hospitalization or death happen each year because of vehicle lifts. Many of these accidents may have been prevented by using the tips below. Here are five ways to optimize vehicle lift safety:

School Bus Maintenance: The Upkeep of Video Systems

As technology advances, many school districts are incorporating state-of-the-art safety equipment into their transportation programs. This means that along with keeping buses in good working order, many school bus maintenance departments must now consider integrated systems. When developing your school bus maintenance plan, don’t forget to include your video systems. Just like any other piece of electrical equipment, regular maintenance will help keep cameras working well and extend their lives.

3 Ways to Tell if Your Bus Fleet is Emergency Ready

The jobs of school bus drivers and transportation administrators are vitally important. As the adults responsible for getting students to and from school, field trips, and special events safely, taking appropriate precautions to prepare for and respond to emergencies is an important part of these jobs.

School Bus Maintenance Winter Challenges

School buses are often exposed to extreme conditions, and the winter months can be particularly hard on your fleet. The addition of ice, snow and chilly weather to an already strained bus can lead to tire slippage, engine trouble and rust. Winter weather can expose the weaknesses in your fleet, and when the air gets chilly, school bus maintenance issues usually spring to life.


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