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Adult Life Programs Continues Community Stewardship with Alliance AutoGas

Adult Life Programs of Hickory, NC is leading the way in their local community through the adoption of alternative fuels. Adult Life Programs is a non-profit organization that offers adult day services and transportation to individuals in Catawba County. Earlier this year, Adult Life Programs began looking for an alternative fuel option for their fleet of vans as a way to set an example in reducing emissions. Through their search, the non-profit decided on autogas, the term for propane when used to fuel an on-road vehicle. Executive Director of Adult Life Programs, Mark Bumgarner, says, “A top priority for our organization is to be a leader in the community. We saw an opportunity to set an example for the area in being more environmentally conscious with our fleet, and we are happy that the decision was made.”

Propane Autogas Adult Life Program Vehicle

After deciding to implement an alternative fuel program, Adult Life Programs started working with Alliance AutoGas (AAG), based in Asheville, NC, in April of 2019. AAG provides the technology to convert a fleet’s existing vehicles to run on propane autogas, in addition to the refueling infrastructure, and then partners with a propane provider for the fuel. Alliance AutoGas member Blossman Gas was chosen as the refueling partner in this project. Vehicles converted by AAG are bifuel, meaning they can run on propane as well as gasoline in the event that the driver is out of range of an autogas refueling location, providing drivers with added security and eliminating range anxiety. Adult Life Programs has a Ford E350 Passenger Van and two Ford Transit Passenger Vans currently running on propane autogas, which they converted this year. Bumgarner adds, “Our drivers were hesitant at first, however, they were pleased to discover how simple the refueling process is. The Blossman Gas store in Hickory has been very accommodating to our autogas needs and answering any questions we have.” When speaking on serving Adult Life Programs, Jimmy Daley, manager of Blossman Gas in Hickory added, “It has been a pleasure for our store in Hickory to take care of Adult Life Programs’ autogas fuel needs. They provide important services to our community, and we want to make sure they can continue providing those services. Blossman looks forward to helping the adult day services bring better air quality to the community while saving on fuel prices by using autogas.”

Autogas is the most widely used alternative fuel in world, with over 23 million drivers on the road globally. Its many benefits include the reduction of harmful tailpipe emissions such as CO2, greenhouse gases, and NOx, the cost savings per gallon vs gasoline or diesel, and in the U.S., the opportunity to use a domestic fuel. 99% of our nation’s propane autogas is produced in North America, meaning fleets that use the alternative fuel are also reducing U.S. dependence on foreign oil. In addition, on average, autogas costs about 30% less at the pump than gasoline at any given time. Even during spikes in the price of crude oil, the relationship between the price of gasoline and autogas have held steady. When using propane autogas, the savings do not stop at fuel. Unlike a diesel engine, there are no additional fluids or filters needed to operate a propane autogas vehicle, reducing maintenance costs and decreasing fleet downtime.

If you talk to any of the 33 employees at Adult Life Programs, you will find a common theme regarding community involvement and care for their community. “Having a low participant-to-staff ratio that provides services ranging from First Aid to caring for those who struggle with Alzheimer’s disease allows individuals who need our services to stay active in the community. With the help of AAG, we are able to provide transportation to those who need it. We have found out first-hand that autogas is a reliable fuel for the individuals who need our adult day services,” says Bumgarner. Not only do individuals who participate in the adult day services receive care from Adult Life Programs, they also help give back to the community. “Adult Life Programs is very active within the area, from helping with our local soup kitchen to participating in the Meals on Wheels program. When those who are active in our programs find out we are helping in our community, they are eager to be a part of those efforts.”

To date, Adult Life Programs has used over 1,200 gallons of autogas, which according to EPA calculations is the equivalent planting 338 trees that grow for ten years. AAG looks forward to seeing more companies follow the progressive example set by Adult Life Programs. William Adair, an Alternative Fuel Consultant for AAG says, “Adult Life Programs has an outstanding team that is committed to serving the Catawba County community. The staff at Adult Life Programs is great to work with in regards to their autogas program.” When discussing the future of the propane autogas program, Bumgarner added “Our vans are on the road 2-3 times a day, 5 days a week. We continue to look at ways to grow our programs, and with that includes analyzing our fleet and utilizing propane autogas.”

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Autogas Answers Events Throughout the Region Promote Alternative Fuel

Alliance AutoGas Employee Speaking at Autogas Answers EventAlliance AutoGas (AAG) participated in Autogas Answers events that took place in Louisville, KY on November 8th and Durham, NC on November 12th. Autogas Answers is a PERC sponsored series focused on bringing autogas awareness and education to communities. During these events, autogas experts present their fleet experiences with autogas and discuss the benefits of autogas as a clean-burning alternative fuel.

In Louisville, The Kentucky Clean Fuels Coalition joined PERC in hosting the Autogas Answers workshop. Superior Energy Services, a long-time equipment partner of AAG, was also present at the event. Jim Bunsey, Director of Operations at Superior Energy Services, spoke on the ease of implementing autogas fleet infrastructure. AAG displayed a propane-powered Ford F-150 for attendees to view during the workshop. Happy Fox, Alternative Fuel Representative for AAG says, “It was great to bring attention to autogas in Kentucky earlier this month [November]. I talked to many people who were intrigued by the Alliance Engineered System being bi-fuel, which allows the driver to switch between using gasoline and propane autogas.”

During the Autogas Answers workshop in Durham, William Adair, of AAG, spoke about the environmental benefits of using autogas such as the 96% NOx reduction compared to diesel buses (read more HERE). Parker Gas, a long-time AAG Partner, also attended and brought an autogas vehicle for display. Adair says, “It was exciting to speak at the Autogas Answers workshop this month [November] in Durham to discuss benefits of propane autogas as a clean, domestic alternative to gasoline and diesel at a fraction of the cost. I am happy that the state I live in is promoting propane autogas for fleets and am proud to highlight our partners who are experiencing the benefits of autogas.”

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K15 Quick-Connect NFPA 58 Code Change for 2020

Quick Connect Autogas Fueling Nozzle Product PictureNFPA 58, the industry benchmark for safe LP gas storage, handling, transportation and use, has updated the code for any propane autogas vehicle produced or converted after January 1, 2020 to require the K15 quick-connect vehicle refueling valve. This requirement will not be retroactive, but will affect any vehicle reintroduced into service, purchased, or converted after this date.

In the event your fleet is purchasing or ordering a new propane autogas vehicle or conversion, Alliance AutoGas recommends upgrading your existing ACME vehicles to the new K15 refueling standard. An Alliance AutoGas representative can provide you with a quote for replacement K15 vehicle valves.

The quick-connect refueling valve:

  • Provides an easier refueling experience
  • Dramatically reduces fugitive emissions for greater environmental and safety benefits
  • Offers a similar refueling experience to gasoline or diesel

If your fleet leases your refueling equipment from Alliance AutoGas, we will upgrade your fleet to a Staubli quick-connect nozzle at no charge to you. If your fleet owns its own refueling equipment, you will need to purchase a new quick-connect nozzle. New Staubli quick-connect nozzles can be purchased through Alliance.

Adaptors are available to connect ACME refueling to K15 quick-connect vehicles, but they are not considered a long-term solution.

Please contact your Alliance AutoGas sales representative for further questions about this change.

Thank you for being a part of the autogas movement.

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Odyssey National Alternative Fuel Vehicle Day

Three Individuals Standing infront of Alliance AutoGas vehicle in parking lotAlliance AutoGas (AAG) participated as an exhibitor in the Odyssey National Alternative Fuel Vehicle Day hosted by the Cobb County Fleet Management department on October 24th in Marietta, GA. This event is held annually to educate the public on the importance and availability of alternative fuel vehicles.

AAG displayed three propane autogas powered vehicles at the event, including a Chevrolet Silverado, Ford F-150, and a Ford Explorer Police Interceptor. Jeffery Sigmon, Alternative Fuel Consultant for AAG said, “We really enjoyed participating in the Cobb County National Odyssey Alternative Fuel event. It was a gorgeous day, with plenty of different fuel options for attendees to analyze and decide what could potentially be the best alternative fuel vehicle for their needs.”

Sigmon also noted that attendees were interested to learn that the Alliance Engineered System is bi-fuel, which allows the driver to switch between using gasoline and propane autogas with ease. In the event that a driver has traveled out of range of an autogas refueling station, the vehicle is capable of running on gasoline with the push of a button. Attendees enjoyed a Ride and Drive, where they were able to test-drive the propane autogas vehicles themselves.

Throughout the day, AAG team members spoke to the benefits of autogas as a clean-burning alternative fuel. When compared to gasoline or diesel, autogas substantially reduces greenhouse gases such as carbon monoxide, carbon dioxide, and nitrogen oxide. “We are always looking for opportunities to educate our communities on the environmental benefits that autogas has to offer. Once people ride in a propane-powered vehicle, they become curious and want to keep learning about the fuel,” says Jessica Johnson, Partner and Projects Liaison for AAG.

Alliance AutoGas Vehicle Ford Truck at Event with Attendees Looking Under Hood

Three Alliance AutoGas Vehicles Featured in Parking Lot

Alliance AutoGas Vehicle Ford Truck at Event with Attendees Looking Under Hood

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Tennessee Sustainable Transportation Forum & Expo

Alliance AutoGas Swag Table Set Up At Expo - Blue Table Cloth with Company LogoAlliance AutoGas (AAG) participated at the 2019 Tennessee Sustainable Transportation Forum & Expo on October 1-2 in Knoxville, TN. The forum highlighted new research and technologies that will improve transportation efficiency, reduce vehicle emissions, and address the mobility needs of all residents in Tennessee.

Candace Gump, Director of NET Trans, customer of AAG, participated in the Expanding Accessible and Equitable Mobility Solutions Panel. NET Trans provides door to door, non-emergency transportation in nine different counties in Northeast Tennessee. AAG began installing propane systems for their autogas vehicles in 2016. NET Trans currently has 13 propane autogas vehicles serving their community, with expansion plans in place for 2020.

Happy Fox, Alternative Fuel Consultant for Alliance AutoGas, says, “The Tennessee Sustainable Transportation Forum & Expo is an important event for the Alliance AutoGas customers in the region. It was a pleasure to support NET Trans, customer of Alliance AutoGas, during the panel they were involved in. I am thankful for the opportunity to connect with other fleet teams throughout the region and having the opportunity to discuss fuel needs. Alliance AutoGas looks forward to helping more fleets make the transition to operating on autogas.”

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Autogas Answers Event to Highlight Alternative Fuel Success in Alabama

U-Haul and Alliance AutoGas Refueling TanksAlliance AutoGas (AAG), a national coalition of businesses providing the fuel, technology, and ongoing support to autogas fleets in North America, and Blossman Gas, AAG founder and the largest privately owned propane company in the nation, will be participating in the Autogas Answers Workshop at the Alabama Department of Agriculture and Industries in Montgomery, AL, on October 10th from 8:00 a.m. to 1:00 p.m. CDT. The workshop will present a compelling, facts-based case for using propane autogas in fleet vehicles. Autogas fueled vehicles will be on hand for live demonstrations, as well as ride and drive opportunities.

Due to its many benefits such as reduced emissions and less cost per gallon, autogas, the term for propane when used to fuel an on-road vehicle, is the most widely used alternative fuel in world, with over 23 million drivers on the road globally. Mark Denton, Vice President of Business Development for AAG, will be delivering a presentation on the environmental benefits of autogas and the basics of its refueling infrastructure. When speaking on the upcoming workshop, Denton says “I am excited to speak at the Alabama Propane Autogas Answers workshop this month in Montgomery on the benefits of propane autogas as a clean, domestic alternative to gasoline and diesel at a fraction of the cost. I am happy that the state I live in is promoting propane autogas for fleets and am proud that some of our AAG customers will also be speaking and telling their stories of how autogas saves them money in their fleet operations.”

John Barnett, Propane Program Manager for U-Haul International, will be the keynote speaker for the workshop. U-Haul has shown exceptional progress this year in growing their autogas refueling infrastructure, their goal being to serve autogas fleets on a nationwide scale through providing a reliable refueling option. When speaking on the upcoming workshop, Barnett added “The Company began selling propane in 1984 and has been the largest retailer of propane in the U.S. since 1987. We have been growing our infrastructure ever since. U-Haul now has over 1100 propane dispensers in the U.S. As autogas has evolved, we continue to upgrade our pumps to accommodate the new autogas vehicles. We work with the major propane suppliers, regional propane suppliers, independent propane suppliers and 3rd party OEM autogas manufactures. Now, more and more people are looking to U-Haul for their autogas fuel needs.”

Alabama has been one of the most successful states in the country in the utilization of propane autogas. The Mobile County Public School Systems (MCPSS) in Alabama, has shown a tremendous commitment to improving air quality for the children in its district by choosing autogas for its school buses. Propane school bus engines lower greenhouse gas emissions to near-zero levels, which improves air quality and eliminates concerns about breathing-related health issues, like asthma and bronchitis.  MCPSS placed 10 new 2019 model buses that operate on autogas in service for the 2019-2020 school year and has 30 more autogas buses being built. Blossman Gas provides the propane autogas to fuel MCPSS buses. When speaking on serving the MCPSS, Blossman Branch Manager Chad Chavers added, “MCPSS have shown exceptional stewardship with their resources in choosing propane autogas to fuel their buses. MCPSS began with the need to improve the air quality for their 26,000 students being transported daily. Autogas met that requirement, and provided the benefit of lowering their operational costs. Blossman continues to look forward to helping MCPSS bring better air quality to their students”

What: Alabama Autogas Answers Workshop

Where: Alabama Department of Agriculture and Industries – Richard Beard Building Conference Room. 1445 Federal Drive, Montgomery, AL 36109

When: Thursday, October 10th, from 8:00 a.m. to 1:00 p.m. CDT

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Alternative Fuel Wins Big at BusCon in Indianapolis

Award Winners at BusCon EventAlliance AutoGas customer Davidson County Transportation System was awarded for their sustainability efforts at BusCon, the largest bus show in North America, which took place September 23rd – 25th at the Indiana Convention Center in Indianapolis, IN. With more than 60 buses on the show floor, buses on display included public transit and paratransit, private companies and university transit systems.

The Propane Education & Research Council (PERC), a national organization providing leading propane safety and training programs in addition to propane-powered technologies, presented the ninth-annual Propane Autogas Fleet Award at the show. Past winners of the awards include Alliance AutoGas customers Spartanburg Regional Healthcare in 2018, and NET Trans in 2017. Representatives from Davidson County and Alliance AutoGas, a national network of propane suppliers, service centers, and equipment providers that support autogas fleets throughout North America, were present at the ceremony. Due to its many benefits such as reduced emissions and less cost per gallon, autogas, the term for propane when used to fuel an on-road vehicle, is the most widely used alternative fuel in world, with over 23 million drivers on the road globally.

Richard Jones, the Transportation Director for Davidson County Transportation System in Lexington, NC, accepted the award on behalf of Davidson County. Jones joined the transportation system in 2016 and was appointed director of the program earlier this year. Davidson County Transportation System has four routes serving Lexington, Thomasville, and Davidson County Community College. They have been touting the benefits of autogas since their relationship with Alliance AutoGas began in 2012. The county currently has seven Ford F450 Cutaway Buses in their fleet operating on autogas. When discussing the award, Jones said “It’s very exciting to be awarded by PERC. Davidson County has made great strides over the past few years in making resources available for the autogas program. We consider our county to be a leader in best practices for the fleet community, and I am grateful for the resources Alliance AutoGas have provided us. I look forward to helping Davidson County expand the autogas program in the future.”

The county has used over 51,000 gallons of autogas to date, which according to EPA calculations is the equivalent of displacing 985 short tons of greenhouse gas emissions, or planting 14,775 trees that grow for ten years. Happy Fox, Alternative Fuel Consultant for Alliance AutoGas, says “The BusCon show is an important event for Alliance AutoGas, as we continue to spread awareness to the benefits of running propane autogas buses and other fleet vehicles. It’s very rewarding to see Mr. Jones and Davidson County be recognized for their efforts in building a sustainable fleet program with us. Alliance AutoGas looks forward to helping more fleets make the transition to operating on autogas.”

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Alliance AutoGas Performs Live Conversion at FS Propane Summer Showcase

Ford F-250 Autogas Converted VehicleAlliance AutoGas (AAG) performed a live autogas conversion on a Ford F-250 at the inaugural FS Propane Summer Showcase this past June in Iowa.

For FS Propane, the propane arm of the agricultural cooperative Growmark, the goal of the showcase was to be a new way of educating the region on propane. “It was our first-ever system-wide propane-only conference,” says Zach Baugher, marketing and technical services manager for Growmark. “Anyone who is involved with FS Propane was invited, and most attended.”

Ed Hoffman, president of Blossman Services – the distribution partner of Alliance AutoGas, said “AAG is pleased to be able to help support FS Growmark’s autogas growth initiatives.  Member partners are experiencing the benefits of using our modern conversion technology to reduce fuel costs, emissions, and support using clean, domestic propane. It was a pleasure to be able to see the first hand enthusiasm and interest for running autogas in their highly utilized fleet. During a well-organized break out educational session, member partners were able to learn how their customers can also benefit from this program.”

To read more about the conversion process with Alliance AutoGas go to: https://www.allianceautogas.com/what-we-do/conversion-process/

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Alliance AutoGas Participates in Minnesota Farmfest

Alliance AutoGas Truck Featured in Tent at Minnesota FarmfestAlliance AutoGas (AAG) participated at the 2019 Minnesota Farmfest on August 6-8 in Redwood County, MN. The festival strives to bring together the best in agribusiness from Minnesota and around the country. The site featured 50 acres of land to showcase products, services, and technologies from over 500 exhibitors and vendors.

AAG presented their aftermarket alternative fuel technology in a 2015 Ford F-150 powered by propane autogas. Butch Cox, Alternative Fuel Consultant for AAG said “We were pleased to see the awareness generated for propane autogas vehicles during the festival. The majority of attendees we had conversations with were not aware you can run propane on trucks.”

Cox also discussed that consumers were interested to learn that our system was bi-fuel, which gives the option to operate on gasoline or autogas. The primary advantage of a bi-fuel system over a dedicated “monofuel” system is its elimination of range anxiety when compared to other alternative fuel vehicles. In the event that a driver has traveled out of range of an autogas refueling station, the vehicle is capable of running on gasoline with the push of a button.

Propane-powered farm equipment is already known for being cost-saving, highly efficient, and environmentally friendly. Now, add the 2019 Propane Farm Incentive Program and farmers can save even more on their purchase. For additional information regarding the 2019 Propane Farm Incentive Program, visit HERE.

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Top 5 Benefits of Autogas Buses

autogas powered school bus with kids exisiting the busWith August in full swing, kids across the country are embarking on another school year. As of last year, more than 900,000 students across 48 states ride propane autogas buses to school. While the numbers are impressive, they really aren’t surprising once you consider the benefits of propane autogas buses. Alliance AutoGas has five reasons on why school transportation departments should be choosing propane autogas over all other fuels.

  1. 1. Quieter During Operation – Compared with diesel engines, propane autogas engines are noticeably quieter when operating, which has a big impact on safety. Bus drivers are responsible for students’ safety during transportation. A quieter bus allows bus drivers to perform their jobs in a much less chaotic environment. It also allows the driver to monitor students in the rear of the bus and take quick action in an emergency.
  2. 2. Reduced Emissions – After more than a year of testing, researchers from West Virginia University concluded emissions measured from propane school buses are significantly lower than those from diesel buses. The study’s results demonstrated that distance-specific NOx emissions measured from the diesel bus were significantly higher than those measured from the propane bus for tests conducted in early 2018. For more information on the emissions measured from West Virginia University, click HERE.
  3. 3. Lower Cost for Schools – Propane autogas provides the lowest total-cost-of-ownership of any fuel option. Several factors contribute to propane autogas low total cost-of-ownership, including reduced fuel and maintenance costs, and accessible infrastructure. Autogas is consistently between 30 to 50 percent less than the fuels fleet owners are transitioning away from, gasoline and diesel, and an annual fuel contract with a propane retailer can lock in your fuel price for added stability.
  4. 4. Reliability – Autogas buses can handle the harsh weather that winter brings, including freezing temperatures. With a fleet of diesel buses, drivers have to arrive two hours early to get buses warmed up and running. In some cases, they will plug buses into block heaters, which increases energy bills. After making the switch to propane autogas, buses will start with the turn of a key, even in below-freezing temperatures.
  5. 5. Propane is Local – Unlike the competition, propane is a clean-burning, domestic fuel. Propane retailers are small business owners and members of the community the school district serves, so it’s another way to keep school district dollars in the community.

To read more on why school transportation departments are choosing propane autogas go to: https://www.allianceautogas.com/school-districts/