The electric school bus rollout reality

The electric school bus rollout reality

Taking commercial vehicle battery electric technology to school.

School bus routes would seem to lend themselves to battery electric operation really well. In the early pilot phases of battery electric vehicles, OEMs touted the lessons learned through electric school bus deployments that could be brought to the commercial trucking market. Well, class is in session. Electric school buses are rolling and to understand how that reality impacts a school district’s fleet operation, the Amped EV Podcast connected with Rick Grisham, transportation director, Richland County School District One in Columbia, S.C., the 11th-largest school district in South Carolina, and Mabel Feng, director of product management, Proterra.

“Proterra is a company that has a history of delivering clean transportation solutions. We have had our own electric buses on the road for over 10 years,” Feng said. “With U.S. manufacturing facilities on both coasts, our almost 1,000 electric buses have ran 30 million miles. In addition to that, powering over a thousand vehicles with our core battery products.”

“Electrification has a big wave of financial support coming in the next five years,” Grisham said, “and we feel like we have helped set the stage for our state and assisted our state department’s with new laws and rebates. [The electric bus] is super quiet and we joke that the only disadvantage we see with an electric bus is that kids will be getting out of bed late because they won’t hear the bus coming through the neighborhood.”

The school district has 16 battery electric buses coming its way that will join a lineup of buses that include diesel and propane fuel types. A mixed fuel source fleet was a strength, according to Grisham, and he has big plans for electric buses. Watch the video above for the full story on how the school district is planning to utilize its Proterra electric buses.

You May Also Like

ABB E-mobility introduces A400 charger

Designed for the end-user, the A400 charger is meant to tackle issues of high complexity, low reliability and low return on investment.


Global EV charging solutions company ABB E-mobility is introducing its new A400 All-in-One charger, which it says offers high power density with a small footprint. Additionally, ABB says the A400 addresses issues including lack of reliability, complex charging experiences for drivers and insufficient return on investment (ROI), which the company believes hinder owner/operators, fleets and large scale deployment of charging infrastructure. ABB tells us the A400 addresses these challenges by introducing innovations in these three problem areas: an end-user centric experience design, industrialized modularity and system engineering, and a telecom-level approach to asset management.

Navigating the EV charging market

Thoughts on future-proofing charging infrastructure installations and charger/EV compatibility.

This year’s truck trade show EV trends

Companies focusing on truck maintenance are approaching zero-emissions differently than OEMs designing new EV offerings.

Extending equipment sustainability strategies to electric transportation refrigeration units

How fleets are starting to use electric TRUs in zero-emissions operations.

Medium-duty EVs are charged up for applications

If EV range lends itself to short-route, return-to-home applications, then certainly they’d be prime equipment selections for medium-duty applications that many trucks, vans and chassis cabs configurations tackle on a daily basis. Related Articles – What trucking execs said at ACT Expo; plus the biggest news from the show – Embracing truck service changes that


Other Posts

Peterbilt’s largest EV order comes from Einride

Einride placed an order for 150 Model 579EVs, which Peterbilt says is their largest U.S. EV order to date.

PepsiCo picks Tesla, Ford for California EV fleet

PBNA ordered 50 Class 8 Tesla Semi trucks, 75 Ford E-Transit electric vans to more than triple size of its EV fleet.

Volvo announces plans for hydrogen ICE trucks on-road testing

Customer tests for Volvo hydrogen combustion engine trucks will start in 2026, with orders starting by the end of the decade.

What it takes to service battery electric trucks

Investing in battery-electric trucks and infrastructure are just the beginning of electrifying your fleet, Volvo has experience taking shops through the rest of the EV journey.