Busline News September 2018
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September 2018 Summary
By Rick Mullen,
Busline Magazine Associate Editor
The following import/export categories include motor buses, coaches, trolley buses and gyrobuses.
The U.S. Department of Commerce, Economics and Statistics Administration, U.S. Census Bureau trade figures for July 2018 indicated vehicle imports were down in five categories outlined, compared to June 2018.
Public-Transport Type Passenger Motor Vehicles With Only Comp-Ign Internal Combustion Piston Engine (Diesel Or Semi-Diesel), Designed For Transport Of 16 Or More Persons, Incl
The United States imported 238 vehicles in July 2018, up 20 percent from 198 vehicles for June 2018. During the first seven months of 2018, 1,377 vehicles were imported.
During the first seven months of 2018, Canada sent 594 vehicles to the United States, while Macedonia exported 358 and Mexico shipped 314.
The average price per vehicle for July 2018 was $386,962.88, up less than 1 percent from the average price for June 2018 of $385,766.93. The average price for the first seven months of 2018 was $403,204.74.
Public-Transport Passenger Vehicles For Transport Of 10 Or More Persons With Only Comp-Ign Internal Combustion Piston Engine (Diesel Or Semi-Diesel), Other
The United States received 338 vehicles in July 2018, up 35 percent from 250 vehicles for June 2018. During the first seven months of 2018, 830 vehicles were imported.
Argentina sent 425 vehicles during the first seven months of 2018, while Germany shipped 395.
The average price of the vehicles for July 2018 was $41,968.69, up 5 percent from the average price for June 2018 of $40,055.22. The average price for the first seven months of 2018 was $43,842.71.
Public-Transport Type Passenger Motor Vehicles With Comp-Ign Internal Combustion Piston Engine (Diesel Or Semi-Diesel), And Electric Motor Designed For Transport Of 16 Or More Persons
The United States received one vehicle during July 2018, down 67 percent from three for June 2018. During the first seven months of 2018, five vehicles were imported.
Macedonia and Canada sent two vehicles each, while Belgium shipped one, during the first seven months of 2018.
The price of the vehicle imported in July 2018 was $1 million, up 103 percent from the average price of $493,544.33 for June 2018. The average price for the first seven months of 2018 was $509,146.80.
Public-Transport Type Passenger Motor Vehicles For Transport Of 10 Or More Persons With Comp-Ign Internal Combustion Piston Engine (Diesel Or Semi-Diesel), And Electric
No vehicles in this category were imported during the first seven months of 2018.
Public-Transport Type Passenger Motor Vehicles With Spark Ignition Internal Combustion Piston Engine And Electric Motor For 16 Or More Persons
No vehicles in this category were imported during the first seven months of 2018.
Public-Transport Type Passenger Motor Vehicles With Both Spark Ignition Internal Combustion Piston Engine and Electric Motor for 10 to 15 Persons
The United States imported no vehicles in this category during June or July 2018. During the first seven months of 2018, Japan shipped one vehicle at a price of $10,325.
Public-Transport Type Passenger Motor Vehicles With Electric Motor Only, For Transport Of 16 Or More Persons Including Driver
The United States imported one vehicle during July 2018, down 80 percent from five vehicles for June 2018. During the first seven months of 2018, 13 vehicles were imported.
China shipped 10 vehicles during the first seven months of 2018.
The average price for July 2018 was $185,250, up 8 percent from $171,889.40 for June 2018. The average price for the first seven months of 2018 was $209,145.15.
Public-Transport Type Passenger Motor Vehicles, With Electric Motor Only For Propulsion, NESOI
The United States imported nine vehicles in this category during July 2018, down 50 percent from 18 vehicles for June 2018. During the first seven months of 2018, 53 vehicles were imported, all from China.
The average price for July 2018 was $9,373.44, up 26 percent from $7,461.72 for June 2018. The average price for the first seven months of 2018 was $8,107.98.
Public-Transport Type Passenger Motor Vehicles For 16 Or More Persons Including Driver, NESOI
The United States imported 99 vehicles during July 2018, down 28 percent from 138 vehicles for June 2018. During the first seven months of 2018, 681 vehicles were imported
Canada sent 657 vehicles to the United States during the first seven months of 2018.
The average price per vehicle for July 2018 was $72,317.40, down 23 percent from $93,907.02 for June 2018. The average price for the first seven months of 2018 was $78,102.84.
Motor Vehicles For The Transport Of 10 To 15 Persons Including Driver, NESOI
The United States imported 124 vehicles during July 2018, down 3 percent from 128 for June 2018. During the first seven months of 2018, 979 vehicles were imported.
Canada sent 556 vehicles to the United States during the first seven months of 2018, while Germany exported 385 vehicles.
The average price per vehicle for July 2018 was $46,339.12, up 1 percent from $45,995.13 for June 2018. The average price for the first seven months of 2018 was $45,400.32.
Export totals for July 2018 were up in two categories, compared to June 2018.
Public-Transport Type Passenger Motor Vehicles With A Compression-Ignition Internal Combustion Piston Engine (Diesel Or Semi-Diesel) Only
The United States exported 899 vehicles during July 2018, up 18 percent from 761 vehicles exported in June 2018. During the first seven months of 2018, 4,969 vehicles were exported.
Canada received 2,935 vehicles during the first seven months of 2018, while Mexico imported 971.
The average price per vehicle for July 2018 was $74,811.55, down 14 percent from the average price for June 2018 of $87,171.79. The average price for the first seven months of 2018 was $76,896.95.
Public-Transport Vehicles With Both Compression-Ignition Internal Combustion Piston Engine (Diesel Or Semi-Diesel) & Electric Motor
The United States shipped 37 vehicles in July 2018, down 38 percent from 60 vehicles for June 2018. During the first seven months of 2018, 290 vehicles were exported.
Venezuela imported 138 vehicles during the first seven months of 2018, while Canada received 68 vehicles.
The average price per vehicle for July 2018 was $9,025.38, down 32 percent from the average price for June 2018 of $13,221.09. The average price for the first seven months of 2018 was $24,950.34.
Public-Transport Type Passenger Motor Vehicles With Both Spark Ignition Internal Combustion Piston Engine & Electric Motor
The United States exported 39 vehicles in July 2018, up 18 percent from 33 vehicles for June 2018. During the first seven months of 2018, 168 vehicles were exported.
Mexico received 59 vehicles during the first seven months of 2018.
The average price per vehicle for July 2018 was $39,635, down 15 percent from the average price for June 2018 of $46,641.30. The average price for the first seven months of 2018 was $35,045.64.
Public-Transport Type Passenger Motor Vehicles With Only Electric Motor For Propulsion
The United States shipped two vehicles in July 2018, down 71 percent from seven vehicles for June 2018. During the first seven months of 2018, 39 vehicles were exported.
Germany received nine vehicles during the first seven months of 2018, while the Dominican Republic imported six.
The average price of the vehicles for July 2018 was $25,250, down 93 percent from the average price for June 2018 of $360,781.14. The average price for the first seven months of 2018 was $166,074.08.
Click on statistics to open .pdf file
Prevost Entertains Customers At A Sonoma NASCAR Weekend
“Continuing its partnership with NASCAR that spans more than 30 years, Prevost welcomed a select group of customers to a Prevost Sonoma (CA) Weekend in late June. In the heart of wine country, the event offered a blend of activities and a lasting finish that paired wine tasting with action-packed NASCAR racing,” said the company.
Prevost Sonoma weekend festivities began with a Saturday morning coach ride to Napa Valley where Cliff Lede Vineyards welcomed the group for lunch and a tasting of its wines. That evening, Silver Oak Cellars hosted the group for a reception and dinner at its Oakville winery. The evening included a tasting of the winery’s cabernet sauvignon, and a tour of the facility, including the water tower and glass house library.
"Sunday, in the Prevost Suite at Sonoma Raceway for the Toyota/Save Mart 350, a western stop in the Monster Energy NASCAR Cup Series, NASCAR Driver Darrell 'Bubba' Wallace Jr. of Richard Petty Motorsports, more often seen at the wheel of the No. 43 Chevrolet Camaro, dropped in for a meet and greet, as did two-time winner of the NASCAR Daytona 500, Michael Waltrip."
Prior to the driver introductions, the group was led on a detailed tour through the NASCAR pit and garage areas before the race.
The guest list included Royal Coach Tours, San Jose, CA, a longstanding Prevost customer of 20 years. Its services run from VIP customer service in Silicon Valley to chartered fun for group tours, all with expectations of a polished coach experience. Royal Coach Tours President Sandy Allen said she was pleased to be on the receiving end over the weekend in Sonoma.
“While we routinely run wine country tours, my dream was, at some point, to visit Silver Oak Cellars for myself. To do so with our Prevost partners was an absolute treat, and it was thrilling to be treated like royalty for the weekend,” said Allen. “Our team is big on NASCAR, so we appreciated the opportunity to get a little closer to the action, visit with the drivers and go behind the scenes. The tour of the garage and pit area was especially interesting for our mechanics.”
According to a press release, “Sayeed Chaudhury, senior director of commuter operations for Loop Transportation, San Francisco, CA, had only recently become familiar with the Prevost brand, and found the Sonoma weekend the perfect venue to get better acquainted. His company is a division of Hallcon, Inc., Lenexa, KS, which provides VIP shuttle and contract bus transportation services nationwide.”
Chaudhury said, “The weekend was casual and relaxed while Prevost made it very first class, our day at the wineries was exceptional. Though I can’t say I am a NASCAR fan, there was no denying the energy and the atmosphere when we joined the group on Sunday in Prevost’s suite. I was captivated once the race started.”
Keith Hayward, Prevost sales director, western region, said such company events are a highlight for many. He added that hosting several occasions, such as this each year, helps to show appreciation for the people Prevost works with.
“NASCAR is a fantastic venue for a break from the normal course of business. With the Sonoma Raceway part of the western leg, our Sonoma weekend is becoming an annual event.”
Prevost has its main manufacturing facilities in Sainte-Claire, Quebec, Canada, and has 10 parts and service centers located in the United States and Canada. For more information, visit www.prevostcar.com.
BYD Has First Electric Bus Order From Canada’s Toronto Transit
BYD’s 40-foot pure electric bus.
“New energy technology company, BYD, has signed a deal to deliver 10, 40-foot, pure electric zero-emission buses, with an option for an additional 30 buses to the Toronto Transit Commission (TTC), Canada’s largest transit operator and the third largest transit operator in North America.The first bus deal with TTC marks a milestone in meeting its target of buying only emission-free buses starting in 2025,” according to a BYD press release.
BYD Canada Vice President Ted Dowling, said, “We applaud the decision of TTC to purchase these buses as part of its goal to be a zero-emission fleet by 2040. TTC is leading Canadian transit agencies to a brighter, cleaner future. These first 10 buses alone will mean a carbon reduction of 700 metric tons every year.”
The press release said, “TTC’s purchase is BYD Canada’s seventh heavy duty electric bus order in the last two years, representing 66 percent of electric buses ordered. In July 2018, BYD Canada delivered four more buses to St. Albert Transit, bringing its fleet to 10 percent electric, as well as two buses to Grande Prairie Transit, a city located northwest of Edmonton.”
For more information, visit www.byd.com.
Hometown Trolleys Offer Features With Modern Technology
The Hometown Trolley features are:
• The streetcar is a heavy-duty vehicle fit for any mass transit, high passenger capacity applications;
• Full stainless steel low-floor patent-pending monocoque chassis design;
• 29-foot, 35-foot and 40-foot lengths;
• Fully warrantied;
• Exceeds required 1:6 ratio for ADA loading with fold-out ramp;
• Available in hybrid electric and CNG; and,
• All streetcar models are Altoona tested, and meet FMVSS, DOT and SAE standards and guidelines.
Hometown Trolleys are recommended for:
• Historical downtown areas, theme parks, wineries, and breweries;
• Public and private tour companies, shopping malls and churches;
• Universities and college campuses and museums;
• Retirement communities and beach communities; and,
• Wedding and party charters and resorts.
For more information, visit www.hometowntrolley.com.
ARBOC Receives Patent For Spirit Of Independence
Pictured from ARBOC are inventors: Kelvin Tetzloff, research and development technician;
Don Roberts, president; and,
Barry Hines, vice president of engineering.
Photo Credit: ARBOC Specialty Vehicles, LLC
ARBOC Specialty Vehicles, LLC (ARBOC), a U.S. subsidiary of NFI Group Inc. (NFI), has received a patent number, U.S. 10,023,243 B2, for its Spirit of Independence (Independence) model.
According to a press release, “The Independence is a small low-floor bus used primarily for transit or shuttle applications. The bus is produced using a monocoque body attached to an original equipment manufacturer (OEM) cab frame, having the chassis removed.The patented passenger compartment floor structure improves accessibility for wheelchairs, passengers assisted by walkers and other riders by providing a sloped entrance with a deployable ramp, and by eliminating any step-up over the rear axle.The continuous low-passenger-floor resides at a lower level than the OEM cab frame.”
Don Roberts, president of ARBOC, said, “ARBOC is proud to develop another fully low-floor option for the transit industry. We are already experiencing a significant amount of success with this new product offering, and expect it to escalate well into the future.”
Roberts is a co-holder of the patent assigned to ARBOC, along with Kelvin Tetzloff, research and development technician, and Barry Hines, vice president of engineering.
The addition of patent number U.S. 10,023,243 B2 brings ARBOC’s total patent count to six for both its cutaway and rail products.
ARBOC said that over 70 percent of North America’s low-floor body-on-chassis buses (cutaways) are manufactured by ARBOC.
For more information, visit www.arbocsv.com.
Trans/Air Announces Personnel Changes In Its Warranty Department
Jeff Kochenour, warranty manager for the past 11 years at Trans/Air, has announced his retirement. He had been in that position for his entire employment at Trans/Air.
“He has handled the warranty department with care, striving to take care of each and every customer in a professional and timely manner. He will be missed, and we wish him all the best in his retirement years,” said the company.
Craig Smith has been promoted to warranty manager. “He has worn many hats during his 30-plus years at Trans/Air. With experience in production, installation, field service and technical assistance, Smith’s transition to warranty manager is a perfect fit.”
Jennifer Wagner continues in her position as warranty administrator. With 13 years experience at Trans/Air, and nine years in warranty, she will work with Smith to continue a high level of warranty service.
Trans/Air manufactures a full line of climate control systems. Units, parts, service, warranty, and new/aftermarket-installations are available through factory-owned operations or distributors throughout North America. For additional information, visit www.transairmfg.com.
Leisure Time Charters & Tours All-Female Family Ownership Purchases 3 2018 MCI J4500 Coaches
Motor Coach Industries (MCI), the U.S. subsidiary of New Flyer Industries Inc., said that over the past 25 years, Leisure Time Charters & Tours’ all-female family team has built the Emerson, GA-based business from a single pre-owned coach to a fleet of 20 coaches, serving schools, universities, athletic programs and other educational and group tour clients.
Leisure Time’s latest purchase — three new 2018 MCI J4500 coaches, featuring an all-new interior with 56-seats, represents the company’s first new coach order from MCI. The new coaches also feature optional Amaya seats, a hostess microphone, power outlets at each passenger seat and Detroit Diesel engines.
Leisure Time's family members with
one of three new MCI J4500s are from left:
Brenda Tidwell; Ingrid (Brenda's granddaughter); Joye Darwin; Patricia Burton and
Elizabethe Tidwell (Brenda's daughter).
“We wanted Detroit motors,” said Brenda D. Tidwell, family member and tour planner, who, with her mother, Joye Darwin, and sister, Patricia Burton, have built the company since 1992.
While Leisure Time’s technicians maintain its fleet, the Detroit dealer is close by. “We have a very good relationship with the dealer, and that helps us get the most from our fleet. We are also impressed with the expertise and experience of our MCI representative, Sean Kelchen, who adds to the confidence we have in our new equipment.”
On average, Leisure Time keeps its coaches on the road for 15 years, reupholstering seats and adding touch-ups to keep its oldest coaches looking fresh.
Tidwell began her motorcoach career as a part-time tour guide, leaving a hospital career to start Leisure Time with her mother, who, at the time, was running a trucking company with her stepfather. The mother-daughter team started the company with a used bus, and as demand grew, they added more pre-owned coaches. Careful with their investments, the pair didn’t begin adding new coaches until 1998.
“Leisure Time’s first new coach MCI order is a point of pride,” according to Patricia Ziska, who is MCI’s vice president of new coach sales. “Leisure Time is not only family- and women-owned, they work very hard to make our industry better and bolster the image of motorcoach travel with a good looking fleet.”
A founding member of the Georgia Motorcoach Operators Association (GMOA) in 2001, Leisure Time has worked to grow statewide membership to nearly 35 companies today. They are also members of the ABA (American Bus Association) and UMA (United Motorcoach Association).
Such membership has led to success. “Industry membership has helped us grow and learn. We attend many of the annual meetings, and enjoy the support and services they offer membership,” said Tidwell.
Patricia Burton joined her sister and their mother as a partner in the business and office manager 22 years ago. Brenda’s daughter, Elizabethe Tidwell, director of educational tours, now rounds out the complete staff of 30.
“From 9 to 5, it’s all business between us,” said Tidwell. “You’d never guess we are family members, because we speak and treat one another as co-workers with jobs to accomplish. But, after work and especially during the holidays, family matters. The work is rewarding, in addition to the service we provide to the community. As single parents, we’ve been able to afford to educate our children and grandchildren,” she said.
According to MCI, Leisure Time is an innovator in tour development. One of its most popular packages is its “Circle of Georgia” tour, developed at the request of a public school for its students. The tour remains popular for students statewide and tourists alike. The company’s red and white coaches can been seen across the U.S. and Canada, and especially in Washington, D.C.
“My mother and I, and also my stepfather, who has passed away, picked a name that stands for fun, and my sister picked a red and white graphic theme to stand out,” said Tidwell. “That was important to my mom and sister when we started ordering new coaches, and they were right.”
Learn more at ltbus.com.
HART Bus Operators Honored For Millions Of Miles Of Safe Driving
Thirteen HART operators, joined by their families, were recognized recently during the authority's Third Annual HART Million Mile Safe Driver Awards Luncheon, in honor of those who achieved outstanding safety milestones in safe driving and service.
The Tampa, FL, authority's newest Million Mile operators are: Kenneth Beach; Rufus Blake; Theresa Briseneau; Tito Goicochea; Marc Henry; Dinesta McBride; Henry Morales; Gustavo Pachon; Jimmy Suarez; Bridget Williams; and Tyran Williams.
"HART's Million Mile Safe Driver Awards program allows executive leadership and management to recognize and honor those who have served the public in a safe and customer-centric manner," said Chief Administrative Officer and Interim Chief of Staff Kenyatta Lee. "This is a great opportunity to show our appreciation for the best of the best, who take great care of the authority's customers and vehicles."
HART bus operators Cosme Garcia and Tony Hernandez joined the two million mile club.
When asked what it requires to drive so many miles without a preventable accident, Two Million Mile Operator Cosme Garcia said that it is a great accomplishment.
“You see others achieve it and you strive for it. As a driver, you appreciate this, perhaps more than others might, just by witnessing all the incidents that take place on the road. The key to safety is not only to be focused on your actions, but also to be observant of other's actions to ensure nothing happens.”
For more information, visit www.goHART.org.
Serious Crimes On RTA Drop Dramatically
The Greater Cleveland Regional Transit Authority (RTA) released the results of a safety audit showing serious crimes on the RTA were down 5 percent for the first six months of 2018, compared with the same period for 2016.
“We wanted to report year-to-date numbers to RTA trustees, so we looked at the first six months of each year in the audit, and the results are very encouraging,” said Joe Calabrese, RTA CEO and general manager. “It’s clear that the hard work RTA Transit Police do to keep our 200,000 daily riders safe is paying off.”
The most dramatic decreases showed robberies down by 80 percent and thefts down by 51 percent for the reporting period.
RTA Transit Police Chief John P. Joyce said the dramatic decrease is the payoff for RTA’s investment in safety.
“We now have more officers, and more visibility. That’s a clear deterrent to would-be criminals. We have working video cameras in every bus and train and on every platform, and we fully utilize that technology. If you commit a crime, we’re going to see you and we’re going to arrest you. That’s a strong deterrent,” said Chief Joyce.
“The safety audit also indicates a decrease in many ‘quality of life’ crimes – from bad behavior on buses and trains to misdemeanors. For example, disorderly conduct dropped 4 percent for the reporting period. But, because RTA police have placed an increased emphasis on arresting people who are drunk, disorderly and belligerent (categorized as aggravated disorderly conduct intoxicated or ‘Aggravated DCI’), that number has increased by 2,100 percent for the reporting period."
Chief Joyce said, “No one can ever completely prevent people from committing crimes on public transit – that’s a challenge for all major transit systems. But we have the people, the technology, the visibility and excellent response time. We work to make riding RTA safe for all of our riders, every day. That’s our number one priority.”
According to the press release, the RTA Transit Police employ 136 full-time sworn police officers. It is the second largest law enforcement unit in Cuyahoga County, and the sixth largest in Ohio. The Transit Police are state of Ohio certified peace officers under the auspices of the Ohio Peace Officer Training Act, and have jurisdiction over all of the GCRTA’s operations including bus, paratransit, light rail, heavy rail and bus rapid transit throughout Cuyahoga County.
For more information, visit www.riderta.com/transitpolice.
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