by Tiana May
10 Jun 2022
SamTrans has purchased 20 battery-electric buses and 10 hydrogen-fuel cell electric buses to provide zero-emission transport in San Mateo County.
These units will be the first zero-emission vehicles to operate in SamTrans’ fleet. The public transport operator is introducing both battery-electric and hydrogen-fuel cell models to assess how the two technologies perform under different conditions. This comparison will allow the agency to establish which models are best suited for each route.
SamTrans will ultimately develop a plan to transition its entire fleet to zero-emission-at-the-tailpipe vehicles by 2034, six years before the state-mandated conversion in 2040.
The purchases include a 13.9 million USD contract with New Flyer for the hydrogen-fuel cell electric buses and a 22.8 million USD contract with Gillig for the battery-electric buses.
The new 40-foot zero-emission buses will be used throughout the SamTrans service area and can carry approximately 38 seated passengers with up to 18 riders standing. The new buses will also feature exterior bike racks that can accommodate up to three bikes and USB charging ports on all double seats.
In addition, the zero-emission buses will have a low-floor design and will be equipped with ramps and a Q-Pod wheelchair restraint system to safely secure wheelchair users in an easier manner than the existing ratchet-based system on SamTrans vehicles,
The zero-emission buses will replace 30 2009 40-foot diesel buses, which have reached the end of their useful life. The new vehicles are expected to begin passenger service in 2023.
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