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Children Learn Propane School Bus Technology at Atlanta Science Festival

ATLANTA, Ga. — A Blue Bird school bus was on display last weekend in an unexpected place—the Atlanta Science Festival. Blue Bird Corporation brought a propane-fueled yellow school bus to the festival to show students emissions-reducing propane bus technology.

The festival attracted thousands of attendees to celebrate the local science community with science, technology, engineering and mathematics (STEM) activities.

“We share our Blue Bird Vision Propane school buses with the youth of the Atlanta area to demonstrate how an everyday part of their lives fits in with their STEM learning,” said Justyne Lobello, product communications and marketing manager of Blue Bird Corporation. “This bus is just one example of the thousands of our alternatively fueled buses servicing schools throughout the country.”

The propane bus was borrowed from Fulton County Schools. “Our school district is helping children learn about the propane buses that they ride to school in and the engineering that’s under the hood,” said Sam Ham, executive director of transportation for Fulton County Schools. “We are so pleased with this technology that we will surpass our original goal to have 300 propane buses by 2022 with 316 propane buses in operation when we open school in August 2019.”

Nearly 1 million students in about 850 school districts ride to school in emissions-reducing propane buses across the U.S. Propane is a nontoxic, noncarcinogenic and noncorrosive fuel. Buses fueled by propane emit fewer greenhouse gases and total hydrocarbon emissions, and virtually eliminate particulate matter, when compared to conventional diesel-powered buses. The ultra-low nitrogen oxide (NOx) ROUSH CleanTech propane engine in Blue Bird Vision buses is 90 percent cleaner than the current Environmental Protection Agency standard.

“We’re thrilled to have Blue Bird join the festival family this year,” said Jordan Rose, executive co-director and co-founder, Atlanta Science Festival. “Blue Bird’s commitment to reducing bus emissions, and to educating the public about the dangers of nitrogen oxides makes them a great partner in building a scientifically literate community.”

Blue Bird also sponsored an interactive booth at the festival’s Exploration Expo. Attendees made propane molecules out of marshmallows and experienced the difference between a propane spill and a diesel spill. Blue Bird’s “smelling station” simulated the odor of propane emissions compared with diesel emissions.

About Blue Bird Corporation

Blue Bird is the leading independent designer and manufacturer of school buses, with more than 550,000 buses sold since its formation in 1927 and approximately 180,000 buses in operation today. Blue Bird’s longevity and reputation in the school bus industry have made it an iconic American brand. Blue Bird distinguishes itself from its principal competitors by its singular focus on the design, engineering, manufacture, and sale of school buses and related parts. As the only manufacturer of chassis and body production that are specifically designed for school bus applications, Blue Bird is recognized as an industry leader for school bus innovation, safety, product quality/reliability/durability, operating costs and drivability.

Blue Bird is the market leader in alternative fuel applications with its propane-powered, electric and compressed natural gas-powered school buses. Blue Bird manufactures school buses at two facilities in Fort Valley, Georgia. Its Micro Bird joint venture operates a manufacturing facility in Drummondville, Quebec, Canada. Service and after-market parts are distributed from Blue Bird’s parts distribution center located in Delaware, Ohio.

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