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Georgia Sheriffs’ Summer Conference 2019

Police Vehicles Parked In LineAlliance AutoGas participated at the 2019 Georgia Sheriffs’ Summer Conference last week at Lake Lanier Islands, GA. The conference held seminars and workshops covering all facets of the responsibilities and challenges faced by sheriffs’ offices, including how to cut costs on fuel without limiting officers’ capability to protect and serve.

The annual conference highlighted the traction that propane autogas is starting to see with agencies in the state of Georgia. Attendees of the conference discussed the major benefits of autogas, starting with the positive impact it has made on departments and their budgets. Reduced emissions and being powered by a domestic fuel were also popular topics when discussing autogas.

Fleets around the state of Georgia are touting the benefits of fueling with autogas. DeKalb County Fleet Management Department was ranked #1 last year in “The 100 Best Fleets in the Americas.” The county starting integrating propane autogas sedans and pickup trucks into their fleet in 1998. Today, DeKalb County has 93 light-duty vehicles and 11 pieces of off-road equipment powered by propane autogas. To read about DeKalb County and other municipal fleets having success with their autogas programs, click here.

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Alliance AutoGas Fueling National Parks – Carl Sandburg Home

National Parks Fueling with Alliance AutoGasEach year since 1985, Americans have celebrated National Park and Recreation Month during July to recognize the important role parks have in establishing and maintaining a positive quality of life. Parks across the United States are contributing to the physical, economic, and environmental well-being of their local cities and towns.

As Park and Recreation Month is coming to an end, we would like to highlight one of our favorite parks (and autogas customers), the Carl Sandburg Home National Historic Site! Located in the village of Flat Rock, NC, this historic site preserves the home of the Pulitzer Prize-winning poet and writer, Carl Sandburg. The 264-acre site includes the Sandburg residence, a goat farm, rolling pastures, mountainside woods, 5 miles of hiking trails on moderate to steep terrain, two small lakes, several ponds, flower and vegetable gardens, and an apple orchard.

Alliance AutoGas (AAG) and the Carl Sandburg Home have had a partnership since December of 2018, when AAG converted two of their Ford F-150 trucks to run on autogas. The conversions took place at AAG’s Research and Development Facility in Asheville, NC. In addition to the trucks, the historic site also has a propane-powered shuttle used to transport attendees on the property. Initially, AAG trained the park staff to fuel and drive autogas vehicles safely. Today, AAG still provides annual inspections on the vehicles twice a year.

Much of the success of alternative fuels in National Parks can be attributed to the partnerships between parks and Clean Cities coalitions. Clean Cities started in 1993 by the U.S. Department of Energy to foster the economic, environmental, and energy security of the United States by working locally to advance affordable fuels. In 2010, Clean Cities launched the National Parks Initiative to put alternative fuel vehicles on the road to improve air quality and promote the use of domestic energy sources. The Carl Sandburg Home National Historic Site is one of the many parks partnered with their local Clean Cities coalitions to help clear the air and make their community more “green” through reduced emissions with autogas!

AAG continues to work with National Parks and Clean Cities coalitions to implement sustainable solutions to fuel fleets with a clean, domestic alternative fuel. For additional information regarding clean energy for National Parks, visit HERE.

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2019 National Sheriffs’ Association Conference

Top of Police Vehicle Displaying LightsAlliance AutoGas will be participating at the 2019 National Sheriffs’ Association Conference June 16th – 18th at the Kentucky International Convention Center, in Louisville, KY. The conference will hold over 60 seminars and workshops covering all aspects of the responsibilities and challenges faced by sheriffs’ offices, including how to cut costs on fuel without limiting officers’ capability to protect and serve.

The answer can be found in propane autogas, a domestic fuel that meets performance needs, reduces fuel costs, and easily incorporates into their existing facilities. Alliance AutoGas will have a booth at the conference beginning Sunday, June 16th (booth #701). Participants will have the ability to speak with an autogas expert and see autogas technology on-site in an autogas powered Law Enforcement edition Ford Explorer Interceptor.

Fleets around the country are touting the benefits of fueling with autogas. One fleet, the City of Kingsport, TN, has been using autogas since 2011. They have found their officers now requesting vehicles that run on propane autogas over gasoline because of the ease of refueling and operation, not to mention the reduced emissions and gallon to gallon fuel cost savings. To read about City of Kingsport and other municipal fleets having success with their autogas programs, click here.

If you are attending the National Sheriffs’ Association, please visit us in booth 701 to see how autogas can benefit your community!

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New Autogas Hybrid Technology Showcased at Sustainable Fleet

Electric Autogas Hybrid Ford FusionAlliance AutoGas (AAG) will showcase leading-edge autogas hybrid technology at the 2018 Sustainable Fleet Technology Conference & Expo August 22nd through 23rd, 2018 at the Durham Convention Center. AAG engineers have designed an autogas electric hybrid to be introduced to the market with the 2017 Ford Fusion. This 2.0 liter, 4 cylinder vehicle will provide additional torque, reduced emissions and better fuel economy due to the innovative hybrid system.

AAG engineers pursued this partial electrification or “hybridization” project with the Ford Fusion with the intent to be prepared for larger hybrid vehicles that Ford is expected to produce in the future, such as the hybrid F-150. Both the Fusion and the F-150 are commonly used in large fleets. By offering a hybrid vehicle that has better fuel economy in the city than highway or in stop and go traffic where most fuel is consumed, AAG customers will experience increased cost savings and reduced emissions.

The technology used in the Fusion has an internal combustion engine with an electric drive motor in what is called a ‘series-parallel’ configuration. This means that both the engine AND electric motor can work together to propel the vehicle. Because AAG uses a mono-fuel port injected vapor system in a port fuel injection engine, replacing gasoline completely with propane autogas, the two technologies are working together to reduce emissions and fuel consumption.

Alliance AutoGas president, Stuart Weidie announced the release by saying, “We are pleased to differentiate Alliance AutoGas in the alternative fuel market as hybrid friendly. This vehicle is a precursor of many to come in the Ford family, and our company is committed to staying ahead of vehicle technology. We want to provide autogas users with the best possible resources for reducing emissions and costs on the market.” Weidie is also speaking at the event on Wednesday, August 22nd.

The Hybrid Ford Fusion will be on display at the Expo, with AAG representatives available to answer technology and fleet-specific questions.

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DeKalb County Receives Best Fleet Award at 2018 NAFA Institute and Expo

Dekalb County Police Fleet Vehicle Running On AutogasThe DeKalb County Fleet Management Department (Georgia) recently ranked #1 in “The 100 Best Fleets in the Americas.” The 100 Best Fleets in the Americas program recognizes and rewards peak performing fleet operations in North America. Out of the 38,000 fleets in North America that were considered for the award, DeKalb County was chosen for “distinguished customer service, sustainability practices and employee training.” The award was announced at the NAFA Institute and Expo in April 2018 in Anaheim, California.

Dekalb Staff Accepting Award
Photo Credit: www.the100best.com

The DeKalb County Fleet Management Department is a propane autogas customer of Blossman Gas of Douglasville, GA. Autogas is an important part of the county’s environmental stewardship program as propane, a clean American fuel, significantly reduces emissions when compared with both gasoline and diesel vehicles consistently over the lifetime of the vehicle. Autogas is also costs approximately $1 less per gallon than gasoline which substantially reduces fuel costs to the department’s budget. The DeKalb County Fleet has been a customer of Blossman Gas (a partner in the Alliance AutoGas international network) since 2009 and uses an average of 73,000 autogas gallons annually, making a forcible positive impact for the county/department by reducing emissions and fuel expenditure.

DeKalb County CEO Michael Thurmond recognizes the leadership of Robert Gordon, deputy director of fleet management in a statement, “His commitment to excellent service, environmental stewardship and creating a high-trust culture is an example for all of us to follow.”

Conrad Davis, Blossman Gas Branch Manager of Blossman in Douglasville, says, “It is a pleasure to work with the DeKalb County Fleet. They put real action behind their principles of utilizing a clean fuel by using autogas. With eight on-site fueling stations, they are extremely efficient in their fuel use. Their authentic commitment to environmental stewardship is an inspiration to many other organizations in our region.”

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Alabama School System Receives Fleet Leadership Award

Propane Education & Research Council: Better Our Buses

Alabama School System Receives Fleet Leadership Award

Mobile County Public Schools System (MCPSS) in Alabama was honored at the Southeast Diesel Collaborative’s 12th Annual Partners Meeting in Atlanta with a Fleet Leadership Award. This award recognized the School System’s commitment to improving air quality for children by using clean, alternative fuel. MCPSS has acquired 80 propane-powered school buses to replace old diesel-powered buses in its fleets. The school district put 30 new buses in service for the 2014-15 school year, and has shown a commitment to adding 50 buses with each new budget year. MCPSS transports 26,000 students to and from school daily. Each new bus will displace about 40,000 gallons of diesel and emit 150,000 fewer pounds of carbon dioxide over its lifetime.

Chad Chavers, Manager for Blossman Gas in Mobile and AAG Partner, will provide the autogas for the schools’ on-site fueling stations. Chavers says, “I am extremely excited about our partnership with the Mobile County Public Schools Systems. Superintendent Martha Peak and Transportation Director Pat Mitchell have been very forward thinking about the environmental impact of the 790 buses that the district operates. With no air conditioning, school leadership was very concerned about the amount of toxic emissions that the students breathe in the warmer months when the windows are down. MCPSS has seen a tremendous savings on the maintenance side vs diesel, and a nice savings on the fuel price vs diesel. The Mobile County Public Schools Systems was the first to purchase propane buses in the state of Alabama and continues to lead the way.”

AAG partners are looking forward to seeing more school districts follow the progressive example set by school districts such as MCPSS, whether by using available Volkswagen Settlement funds, or through using means from within their own communities. The decision to switch to alternative fuels, most notably autogas, is a decision that pays off in dividends both for immediate air quality improvement and overall cost of ownership. In addition, due to low investment costs for autogas infrastructure and a strong network of AAG fueling partners across the nation, school districts with one bus or 1,000 are equally able to appreciate the benefits of this alternative fuel.

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PFDI Technology and the Alternative Fuel Movement

For the first time in the U.S., Port Fuel Direct Injection (PFDI) technology fueled by propane autogas is a viable solution, and the results are powerful. As more fleets move toward Port Fuel Direct Injection engines, Alliance AutoGas (AAG) has found a solution for those who want to lower their emissions and use cost effective propane autogas. AAG has successfully engineered PFDI conversion systems for the 2018 Ford F-150 in two engine choices: 3.3 Liter V6 and 5.0 Liter V8. This new technology features autogas as the primary fuel, while strategically utilizing gasoline as a combustion lubricant. At the 2018 Work Truck Show in Indianapolis, AAG will display two vehicles with the new Propane-PFDI (P-PFDI) technology offering participants the opportunity to view the new autogas system.

The 2018 F-150 is only the beginning of P-PFDI technology for Alliance. AAG engineers expect the P-PFDI engine to continue growth within the larger vehicle markets. “We plan to be prepared for the advancement in OEM technology with the complementary propane autogas conversion technology,” said Ed Hoffman, President of Blossman Services, Inc. “Propane autogas is the most popular alternative fuel world-wide, proven in more than 28 million vehicles, and we must always be prepared to meet the demand of fleets throughout the country.”

Stephen Holland, Director of Engineering for Blossman Services, Inc. explained that his team noticed a major shift in OEM technology several years ago as manufacturers began to implement PFDI engines in small cars. Holland said, “PFDI is a fairly complicated technology, and we knew it was only a matter of time before PFDI became widespread, including implementation into big trucks. It was important for us to begin engineering an autogas solution quickly.” Holland continued, “We were prepared with a conversion system as soon as Ford introduced the first PFDI commercial truck. We know that PFDI will continue to grow, and we will be ready for the next class of vehicles as they come to market.”

AAG’s platform specific engineered P-PFDI conversion system allows fleets to utilize autogas and experience top performance with the following features and benefits:

  • Reliability: The new autogas PFDI system provides performance fleets can depend on in extreme weather conditions. There are no cold start issues, nor hot weather complications.
  • Emissions Reduction: Autogas PFDI technology dramatically reduces tailpipe emissions, most notably include CO₂, CO, and NOx. “The tailpipe emissions on the 3.3 liter engine puts this vehicle in the same emissions class as a Hyundai Elantra or Subaru Outback. The 5.0 liter engine is in the same emissions class as the Chevy Volt and the Toyota Yaris,” explained Holland.
  • Uncompromised range: “Fleet managers can relax – this P-PFDI system eliminates the range anxiety that can come with other alternative fuels. The P-PFDI system retains the same range as gasoline to keep your vehicles on the road, no matter where it may lead,” stated Hoffman.
  • Proven OE hardware: The P-PFDI conversion system is an adaptation of AAG’s proven technology that is currently utilized on over 100,000 vehicles globally with demonstrated success.
  • Support: AAG provides an industry leading 5 year, 100,000 mile warranty supported by a trained nationwide service network.

The new P-PFDI technology will be unveiled at the 2018 Work Truck Show. Fleet managers who are considering the cost and environmental benefits of alternative fuels will be able to interact first-hand with the autogas system that significantly lowers their emissions and per vehicle expense.

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NTEA 2018 Work Truck Show Ride and Drive

2018 Autogas Ride And Drive VehicleThe Vehicle & Technology: Alliance AutoGas (AAG), with a history of helping over 10,000 vehicles make the transition from gasoline to propane autogas, conducted a live conversion of a 2016 3.5 Liter Ford F-150 V6 at the Work Truck Show in March 2016, achieving the “Fastest Recorded Alternative Fuel Conversion to Propane Autogas” in a record-setting time of 1:32:25. Alliance AutoGas installed a complete “plug and play” conversion system including a secondary fuel tank to store the autogas, an injector spacer plate, and an engine control unit (ECU). Attendees will have the opportunity to drive this same high-performing vehicle at the 2018 Work Truck Show Ride and Drive!

Conversion Details: The 21-gallon autogas tank was placed on the underbelly of the truck. The ECU acts as the switch that allows the vehicle to toggle from gasoline to autogas. It is connected to the vehicle with one plug. AAG has its own injection technology utilizing an injector spacing plate. The bolt-on part allows, at a set position, for the propane to flow into the engine. The “Plug and Play” technology replaces the need for any drilling or cutting of any parts or wires. The system does not require any permanent vehicle modifications and can be removed, which is especially convenient for fleet managers who lease vehicles. “Any fleet that covers a substantial amount of miles would have a real-life savings very quickly with expectation of continued long term payoff and system reliability,” notes Stephen Holland, Blossman Services, Inc. Director of Engineering.

Coast-to-Coast Clean Air Ride: The vehicle left the Work Truck Show 2016 to begin a cross-country tour in partnership with several Clean Cities Coalitions, the Propane Education & Research Council, Bobit Business Media/Work Truck Magazine, and the American Lung Association of the Southeast, Inc. Ride sponsors/supporters included Blossman Gas, Worthington Industries, Blue Star Gas, thyssenkrupp, and Wounded Warriors of MS. The Alliance AutoGas Coast-to-Coast Clean Air Ride was a 5500 mile, 12 city trip commencing on May 2 in Kansas City, KS, traveling to Seattle, WA, and completing its journey in Jacksonville, FL on May 18. There was an additional “homecoming” event held May 23 in Asheville, NC.

The goals of the F-150’s trip included:

  • Underscore the importance and impact of reducing CO₂ emissions through the use of propane autogas. The 2014 Atlantic Consulting study indicates that most studies that involve comparisons of CO₂, tailpipe emissions from autogas and CNG cars suggest that the reductions in emissions compared with gasoline and diesel are typically about 50% higher.
  • Prove the reliability of propane autogas as an alternative fuel whether for short or long haul travel. With AAG’s network of propane fueling partners nationwide, this vehicle was able to make the journey.
  • Demonstrate how cost-effective propane autogas is when compared to traditional fuels. “We wanted people to see first-hand how simple and easy it is to convert a vehicle, how well it runs, and how it gives the fleet manager a well-documented return,” noted Ed Hoffman, President of Blossman Services, Inc.

Current Vehicle Status: The converted F-150 was put into the Alliance AutoGas fleet upon its return to Asheville. It is currently driven by Happy Fox, AAG Alternative Fuels Consultant and exhibitor for the 2018 Ride and Drive. The vehicle has 102,000+ miles on it (about 60,000 miles added post conversion), and has required only standard maintenance over the two years since the autogas conversion in 2016.

“The cross country trip in Alliance AutoGas’ Ford F-150 was a great opportunity to demonstrate why propane autogas is the world’s Number One alternative fuel. We were able to educate citizens across the country about the extended range of autogas vehicles as well as the benefits of real cost savings and emissions reductions. The continued use of this vehicle in our own fleet proves that the propane autogas vehicle is not just a viable alternative, but a solution of preference for American fleet managers.”

Stuart E. Weidie, President and CEO of Blossman Gas and President of Alliance AutoGas

For more information on the converted F-150 Ride and Drive vehicle, contact Happy Fox, AAG Alternative Fuels Consultant, at 828-575-8024 or jfox@allianceautogas.com.

For more information and press kit about AAG at the 2018 Work Truck Show: https://www.allianceautogas.com/ntea-work-truck-show/

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2017 Sustainable Fleet Technology Conference & Expo

Converted Ford Autogas Truck at Sustainability ConferenceAlliance AutoGas will be participating at the 2017 Sustainable Fleet Technology Conference & Expo Wednesday through Friday, October 11th – 13th at the Raleigh Convention Center. Featured speakers from Alliance AutoGas include Stuart Weidie (CEO of Alliance AutoGas), Ed Hoffman and Happy Fox.

Autogas vehicles on display will include:

Explorer Interceptor, AAG Booth #107

Autogas Truck, NCPGA Booth

F150, Main Lobby

F150, Ride & Drive

Alliance AutoGas is the only complete program that helps American fleets transition from gasoline to autogas, the world’s most popular alternative fuel. Over 99% of autogas is produced in North America, allowing for energy independence and a reliable fuel source. Working with Alliance AutoGas to launch a successful autogas program is the easiest, most affordable way for fleets to reduce gasoline consumption, cut fuel costs and lower vehicle emissions.

  • Autogas lowers harmful emissions significantly when compared to gasoline and diesel vehicles
  • Autogas greatly reduces pollutants such as particulate matter
  • Autogas is nontoxic and water soluble
  • Autogas reduces your carbon footprint by up to 96% compared to other fuels when considering total emissions

(source: World LP Gas Assoc.)

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NET Trans Named Recipient of the 7th Annual Autogas Fleet Award

Net Trans Receives Award at ExpoNET Trans (Northeast Tennessee Rural Public Transportation), an Alliance AutoGas customer, is the 2017 winner of the 7th Annual Propane Autogas Fleet Award from the Propane Education and Research Council (PERC). This award recognizes NET Trans’ strong commitment and successful transition to propane use as a member of fleet transit. The award will be presented to them at BusCon in Indianapolis, Indiana on September 13th, 2017.

NET Trans is a regional public transit system serving Carter, Greene, Hancock, Hawkins, Johnson, Sullivan, Unicoi, and Washington Counties in the northeast region of Tennessee, along with urbanized areas outside the city limits for Bristol, Kingsport, and Johnson City. The company is a not for profit, working as part of the First Tennessee Human Resource Agency. The company is committed to the well-being of their clients and takes this commitment into consideration for all aspects of their operations, including how their vehicles affect air quality.

In 2016, NET Trans implemented a bi-fuel (gasoline and propane) pilot program. By doing this, they expect to realize a net savings of $9,000 per vehicle over the course of its “useful life”. The pilot program began with 6 vehicles and quickly expanded to 21 in all. When informed of the award, NET Trans replied, “We are proud to serve our clients and community, working hard to keep them first. Being recognized for our efforts is a graciously accepted perk, but not our main focus. The road is part of our lives, and we’re keeping it clean.”

For more about NET Trans, please call 423-461-8200 or https://nettrans.org.