November 26, 2014

Potelco, One of Washington’s Largest Fleets, Switches to LNG Vehicles

With operations requiring the use of over 3,000 vehicles, Potelco’s Fleet Manager Steve Steedley, is no stranger to managing the complex logistics of one of Washington State’s largest fleets. So when the power line maintenance and construction company made the decision to incorporate natural gas vehicles (NGVs) into its business, Steve researched the market for about a year before making the purchase.

The company now runs 42 Freightliner M2 model trucks with the Cummins Westport 8.9L ISL G engine: 20 bucket trucks, 20 digger trucks and two fuel tankers. Each vehicle is being fuelled with cold liquefied natural gas (LNG) using the Westport iCE PACK™ LNG Tank System.

“We’re a homegrown company and it’s good for the [local] economy, getting the fuel from here,” Steve says. “It’s all around a good business -- from an economic standpoint and for keeping jobs at home.”

Potelco has over 1,300 employees – the company completes electrical line construction, cable television, gas pipeline, fibre optics, transportation, and telecom projects.
One of Potelco's 42 natural gas vehicles, powered by the Westport iCE PACK™ LNG Tank System filled with cold liquefied natural gas.

November 21, 2014

Training Day - Westport Dallas

As part of the recently-announced new Type A compressed natural gas (CNG) Collins Bus, with the Westport WiNG™ Power System, Westport Dallas staff organized a three-day training session with our partner installers from Olathe Ford during the last week of October. Olathe’s Jeff Johnson, Service Foreman, and Kevin Davis, Installer Technician, joined Westport’s Service Training Manager James Trott along with the Westport installation team on the factory floor to review several essential topics, skills and procedures.

James says the purpose of the training was twofold: an instructional course on how to build the bus and an update in service training on any new programs and diagnostic methods.

“We have a really strict protocol for quality control,” James says. “When they finish building the unit and drive it, they have to monitor the data, capture it, and send it back to us so we can verify it’s within specifications before they ship it.”
Westport's Stefan Yarbrough show's Olathe's Jeff Johnson and Kevin Davis installation and servicing procedures in the
Type A CNG Bus from Collins: here they learn how to remove hardware and start preparing to install the tank saddles.

November 17, 2014

Westport Participates in first NGV event in South Africa

Johannesburg, South Africa is host to the first ever NGV event in South Africa and the Sub-Saharan African region during NGV2014 South Africa Conference and Exhibition this week. As the most developed and influential country in the African region, South Africa is an emerging natural gas vehicle (NGV) market that shows promising growth potential with the availability of natural gas in neighbouring countries and government initiatives to reduce greenhouse gas emissions. Today, in the state of Gauteng, there are about 385 taxis and buses already operating on compressed natural gas (CNG), with the Benoni Taxi Association committed converting 20 per cent of its fleet.

“We chose to hold this year’s event in South Africa because natural gas for transportation is already on the move there,” says Claudio Kohan, NGV Communications Group Director. “The government has initiated the National Climate Change Response flagship program which advocates CNG use and the Industrial Development Corporation will fund any associated infrastructure development projects through the Green Energy Efficiency Program.”

November 14, 2014

Staffing, Recruitment Firm Centric Sweden Purchases 20 New Bi-fuel Vehicles with Westport's CNG Systems

Centric Sweden, a staffing and recruitment solutions firm for the technology and health industries, has made the official switch to Volvo V60 and V70 Bi-Fuel Wagons with Westport’s technology for their fleet operations. The company had previously been using only Volkswagen Passat EcoFuel vehicles in their fleet.

“Centric Sweden’s commitment to compressed natural gas (CNG) vehicles combined with Volvo’s reputation for safety and quality as well as our ability to offer the vehicles at excellent value was the driving force behind the change,” says Anders Johansson, Managing Director, Westport Sweden.

November 12, 2014

City of Corpus Christi Likes its NGV Options

For Corpus Christi’s fleet manager, Jim Davis, the city’s decision to equip its fleet with natural gas vehicles was a “common sense thing to do.” 

“We’ve had [an NGV fleet] for several years -- probably eight years,” Jim says. “In the last two or three years the market’s really opened up as far as vehicle options and we’ve had the opportunity to get more into compressed natural gas (CNG) heavily.”

Jim says city council has been the main driver behind the city’s fleet of just over 80 NGVs; half of which are powered by either the Westport WiNG™ Power System or by Cummins Westport engines.

This Ford F-250 is powered by the Westport WiNG Power System, and is a part of Corpus Christi's fleet of over 80 NGVs. 

November 10, 2014

Love’s Showcases Commitment to Natural Gas Vehicles at NGV Conference and Expo; Features Westport WiNG Power System on Ford F-350 and Cummins Westport 12-liter CNG Peterbilt

When visitors visit Love’s Travel Stops & Country Store’s (Love’s) booth at this year’s Natural Gas Vehicle (NGV) Conference and Expo in Kansas City, Missouri, it will be evident that the convenience store and travel center giant is committed to the natural gas vehicle industry. The booth will showcase a Westport WiNG™ Power System dedicated compressed natural gas (CNG) Ford F-350 truck used to service fleet operators at Love’s Truck Tire Care centres. Also featured at the bright yellow and red booth will be a mock-up version of Love’s signature Integrated In-Lane Fueling station with a Cummins Westport (CWI) 12-liter compressed natural gas (CNG) engine powered Peterbilt truck.

Nationwide, Love’s is the only travel stop that offers an integrated, in-lane fueling experience for heavy duty vehicles in every lane. These full service travel stops combine cardless radio frequency identification (RFID) technology, diesel, diesel exhaust fuel (DEF) and fast-fill CNG (where available) in a single-lane to provide time-saving convenience with access to multiple fueling solutions for operators. The Truck Tire Care centres, open 24 hours a day, offer tire care and roadside assistance to ensure trucks stay up and running.

November 6, 2014

Collins Bus and Westport to Display NEXBUS® Type A CNG School Bus at NAPT 2014 Summit

Collins Bus Booth #111 to Feature Westport E-450 Cutaway Chassis

Demonstrating the National Association for Pupil Transportation’s 2014 Summit theme of Driving Innovation, Collins Bus and Westport are partnering for the first time to display NEXBUS®: the Collins Type A compressed natural gas (CNG) school bus equipped with the Westport WiNG™ Power System. NAPT runs from November 8 – 11, 2014 at the Kansas City Marriott Downtown.

The chassis on exhibit at Booth #111 gives attendees a chance to see the unique Westport CNG system. With NEXBUS® agencies such as school districts, child and senior care facilities and municipalities can enjoy the benefit of the historical price stability of natural gas and decreased emissions.

“We are very pleased to partner with Westport to begin offering a CNG bus model in the fastest growing segment of the alternative fuel school bus market,” said Kent Tyler, president and CEO of Allied Specialty Vehicles’ bus division and interim president of Collins Bus. “As Ford’s largest qualified vehicle modifier, Westport’s CNG expertise and proven technology allows us to offer the most reliable clean energy Type A school bus model available to meet the evolving needs of our dealers and diverse customer base.”