EPA 2016 School Bus Replacement Rebates Available

EPA’s National Clean Diesel Campaign (NCDC) is now accepting applications for the 2016 School Bus Replacement and Retrofit Funding Opportunity.  This is a rebate program to replace and retrofit older school buses in both the public and private fleets.  The total funding for this opportunity is approximately $7 million. To learn more about the rebate program, applicant eligibility, and the selection process, please visit www2.epa.gov/cleandiesel/clean-diesel-rebates.

EPA will accept rebate applications until Tuesday, November 1, 2016, at 4 pm EDT.  Applicants may request to replace up to ten buses per application and retrofit ten buses per application with a Diesel Oxidation Catalyst plus Closed Crankcase Ventilation system.  Fleets with 101 or more buses may submit two applications.  Applications may be downloaded from www2.epa.gov/cleandiesel/2016-school-bus-rebate-supporting-documents.  Completed applications should be emailed to CleanDieselRebate@epa.gov.

EPA will offer a webinar for interested applicants on Friday, October 7, 2016, at 1 pm EDT.  The webinar link is https://attendee.gotowebinar.com/register/2323857777182198529 and the call-in number is 866-299-3188, access code 20 2343 9571.

Questions about the program should be sent to CleanDieselRebate@epa.gov.

Blue Bird Tech Training Scheduled

Looking for additional technician training on your recent Blue Bird All American T3RE school buses? We have a class scheduled this summer just for you! Here’s what on tap:

Blue Bird All American T3 Rear Engine Two Day Workshop

  • Conducted by a Blue Bird Factory Trainer
  • Focused on multiple T3RE chassis and body systems
  • Provides opportunity to ask questions of Blue Bird
  • Registration includes TechReference DVD and printed T3RE Service Manuals

August 18 – 19, 2016
8 am to 4 pm, lunch included
Training held at Western Bus Sales facility in Boring, OR
Trainer: Blue Bird Factory Trainer
30355 SE Highway 212, Boring, OR 97009
Class is Free

* Limited to two (2) technicians per district/contractor. 

Visit the Registration Page to secure your spot today!

Join Our Service Tech Team!

We currently have openings to join our growing Service Team. We’re looking for a few good technicians in the Portland metro area who are interested in working for a family-owned business with an excellent reputation and stellar group of team members. Are you looking to join a team that feels like family, that works hard but has fun too, coupled with a very competitive benefit package? Then read on and contact us about this great opportunity!

DIESEL TECHNICIAN

WBS is looking for experienced gas /diesel technicians. The position is full time and is located at our main office in Boring, Oregon. WBS is a NAPA Certified Truck repair shop with an onsite NAPA parts store and warehouse.

WBS is a certified repair facility for Blue Bird, Cummins, ROUSH CleanTech, MCC, TransAir, Webasto, Onspot, Ricon, and Braun among many others. Preference will be given to truck, bus and / or heavy equipment experience. Knowledge of Ford & GM chassis is a definite asset. The applicant should possess strong trouble shooting skills. The mechanical work will be varied and will performed on trucks, school and commercial buses, and RVs.

For more information on the position, visit our Careers page.

The pay scale is competitive and will be determined based upon experience and ability to perform the necessary job duties. Robust medical/dental/vision benefits, 401k match, profit sharing, life insurance and long term disability insurance are just some of the many fringe benefits offered.

INTERESTED?

Please email your resume to the attention of: Matt Fery.

Faxes are also welcome: 503-905-0003

Blue Bird Tech Training at STN

Blue Bird just announced a Technician Training workshop at the STN EXPO Conference and Trade Show in Reno. This training package gets you 2½ days of training on the latest technical aspects of Blue Bird buses, which includes a continental breakfast each morning, lunch the first full day, service manuals, plus admission to the STN Tradeshow and STN Social – all for just $250! They will be covering multiple topics, including:

  • Electrical
  • Multiplex Diagnostics
  • Instrumentation
  • Engine Emissions
  • Electronic Stability Control
  • Propane Fuel System
  • and More!

To register for this Blue Bird training package, visit Blue Bird’s registration page.

Propane Tech Training Registration open

Here’s what on tap:

PROPANE AUTOGAS SCHOOL BUS TECH WORKSHOP

  • Fuel system overview
  • Ford engine and transmission components
  • Component breakout sessions
    • In-tank, underbody, and engine bay components
  • Diagnostic breakout sessions
    • Fuel system depressurization, bugged vehicles, component testing
  • Training will include both classroom time and hands-on tasks in small groups

WHO – WHAT – WHEN  – WHERE
Wednesday, May 11, 2016

8 am to 5 pm, lunch included
Training held at Western Bus Sales facility in Boring, OR
Trainer: Technical Specialists from ROUSH, Ford, and Blue Bird
30355 SE Highway 212, Boring, OR 97009
Class is Free

*Limited to two (2) technicians per location depending on available space. Register now!

REGISTER HERE

Save-The-Date For Tech Training

Here’s what on tap:

PROPANE AUTOGAS SCHOOL BUS TECH WORKSHOP

  • Fuel system overview, propane properties, and shop safety
  • Ford engine and transmission components
  • Component breakout sessions
    • In-tank, underbody, and engine bay components
  • Diagnostic breakout sessions
    • Fuel system depressurization, bugged vehicles, component testing
  • Training will include both classroom time and hands-on tasks in small groups

WHO – WHAT – WHEN  – WHERE
Wednesday, May 11, 2016

8 am to 5 pm, lunch included
Training held at Western Bus Sales facility in Boring, OR
Trainer: Technical Specialists from ROUSH, Ford, and Blue Bird
30355 SE Highway 212, Boring, OR 97009
Class is Free

REGISTRATION IS NOT YET OPEN. Watch for the registration link on our Training Page, coming soon!

Alternatives to Vans & Suburbans – the MPV!

Does your school operate Suburbans or vans as Type 10 vehicles? If so, it’s time to consider your options.

The Micro Bird T-Series Multi-Purpose Passenger Vehicle offers significant safety advantages over Suburbans and vans at a very comparable price:

  • 9 passengers plus the driver for a total of 10
  • Built with the same stringent school bus construction standards
  • Wide center aisle and higher 66″ headroom for ease of passenger loading and unloading
  • Better visibility to the road and loading door
  • More seating space with 3 point lap/shoulder belt seats for all passengers
  • Similar in price to a new Suburban with significantly greater safety features

Learn more about how the Micro Bird by Girardin MPV activity bus product can fit in your fleet HERE.

Field Service Tech Transition

Bill Clark has faithfully served as our Western Field Service Technician for over 14 years, and been with WBS for almost 16 years. He has traveled almost half a million miles in his various service trucks. It is with bittersweet feelings that I announce that Bill will be retiring from the road and Western Bus Sales this winter. This will allow him to stay closer to home, and I’m sure that includes spending time with his grandkids and those fish he’s always trying to catch. Please join me in wishing Bill well in this true next adventure in his life. He will be missed dearly!

At this time, we are announcing that Dustin Deppenmeier will step into the role of Field Service Technician for our Western Oregon and SW Washington customers, effective immediately. Dustin has been a Service Technician with WBS for over 2 years and is and will continue undergoing training to get him up to speed as quickly as possible. He has big shoes to fill.

Over the next several weeks and months, Bill will be traveling with Dustin to our customers to make introductions, as well as continue warranty diagnosis and bus repairs that are in the pipeline.  Dustin’s scheduled work week will be 5 days a week, Monday through Friday.

We have had an incredibly long run with Bill as our Western Field Service Technician, as he has been serving our customers in the field for over 14 years. With any change predictably will come some bumps in the road and opportunities for improvement. I am confident that the entire WBS team will proudly support Dustin as he moves into this new and very important position.

IMG_2432Dustin D

Dustin Deppenmeier
Western Field Service Technician
Cell (971) 563-1778
Email Here
Toll-Free Office (800) 258-2473

EPA 2015 School Bus Replacement Rebates

EPA’s National Clean Diesel Campaign (NCDC) is now accepting applications for the 2015 School Bus Replacement and Retrofit Funding Opportunity.  This is a rebate program to replace and retrofit older school buses in both the public and private fleets.  The total funding for this opportunity is approximately $7 million.  To learn more about the rebate program, applicant eligibility, and the selection process, please visit www2.epa.gov/cleandiesel/clean-diesel-rebates.

EPA will accept rebate applications until Friday, October 30, 2015, at 4 pm EDT.  Applicants may request to replace up to ten buses per application and retrofit ten buses per application with a Diesel Oxidation Catalyst plus Closed Crankcase Ventilation system.  Fleets with 101 or more buses may submit two applications.  Applications may be downloaded from www2.epa.gov/cleandiesel/2015-school-bus-rebate-supporting-documents.  Completed applications should be emailed to CleanDieselRebate@epa.gov.  Please include your organization’s name in the subject line.

EPA will offer a webinar for interested applicants on Tuesday, October 6, 2015, at 2pm EDT.  The webinar link is https://attendee.gotowebinar.com/register/2323857777182198529 and the call-in number is 314-627-1518, access code 537-048-931.

Questions about the program should be sent to CleanDieselRebate@epa.gov.

Tech Training Class FULL

We received an overwhelming response to our Technician Training Workshop titled “Diesel Emissions 101: What Techs REALLY Need to Know,” and the class is now full.

You may still register for a spot on the wait list via the Registration Page. If space becomes available due to cancellations, you will be notified.

Look for our next Technician Workshop announcement coming soon!

Technician Training Scheduled

As part of our new year round Technician Training program, we will be hosting more frequent one day or two day workshops in addition to our annual Blue Bird Service Training Workshop, typically held in the summer. Here’s what on tap:

DIESEL EMISSIONS 101: What Techs REALLY Need to Know

  • Evolution of aftertreatment specific to the Cummins engine in Blue Bird applications from 2007 to current
  • Theory and operation of all three emission levels
  • How to triage: what does this fault code mean?
  • Dash indicators and specific instrument warnings
  • Cummins InSite features and benefits: will be hooked up live to a Cummins engine and displayed on our 10′ projection screen
  • The Blue Bird difference

Thursday, October 29, 2015
8 am to 4 pm, lunch included
Training held at Western Bus Sales facility in Boring, OR
Trainer: Luke Myers, Product Support Manager
30355 SE Highway 212, Boring, OR 97009
Class is Free

Visit the Registration Page to secure your spot today!

Gasoline Type C Blue Bird Vision On The Way

Blue Bird unveiled their newest powertrain offering – GASOLINE – in the Type C Vision school bus product line on July 28, 2015. This bus is designed to make ownership more affordable and to provide easier maintenance for school districts and contractors, and will utilize Ford Motor Company’s modern and highly-efficient Ford 6.8L V10 gasoline engine. Blue Bird is the only major manufacturer to offer a Type C gasoline-powered school bus.

Utilizing much of the same proven technology and engine architecture as their class-leading propane-autogas powered bus, Blue Bird’s new gasoline bus will offer the same reliability and durability that customers expect — at a lower acquisition cost. Additionally, Blue Bird is standing behind this new offering with a 5 year / unlimited mileage powertrain warranty.

Customers will find the benefits of the Blue Bird Gasoline Bus include:

  • Lower upfront price
  • Minimal emissions hardware to maintain
  • Outstanding cold weather starting capability
  • Familiarity of engine for mechanics
  • Quiet, smooth operation
  • 5 year / unlimited mileage warranty

“With an attractive upfront price, Blue Bird’s new gasoline-powered Vision bus will provide a very affordable option to customers and keep the total cost of ownership as low as possible,” said Phil Horlock, President and CEO of Blue Bird. “Maintenance and service of this proven and modern gasoline engine is simpler for technicians, while the bus is powerful and quiet to drive. This product is another example of our commitment to bringing innovative and affordable class-leading products to the school bus market that customers want and value.”

Blue Bird’s exclusive partnership with Ford and ROUSH CleanTech, the same team that brought the Blue Bird propane-powered Vision to the industry, has allowed Blue Bird to produce a Type C gasoline bus featuring the same proven 6.8L V10 engine and 6R-140 transmission used in more than 5,500 Blue Bird Propane Vision buses. The gasoline engine provides excellent performance, coupled with smooth, quiet operation to power Blue Bird’s Type C Vision school buses.

“Ford Component Sales is excited to continue to partner with Blue Bird and ROUSH CleanTech in creating innovative products. We started with our class-leading propane engine and now our gasoline engine will also be powering Blue Bird’s Vision bus,” said Ford executive Jamy Rankin. “The gasoline-powered bus will utilize the same powertrain as Ford’s medium-duty commercial F-650 / F-750, tailored for school bus applications, providing industry-leading engine performance and durability to Blue Bird’s customers.” Ford has produced over 1.3 million of these engines, making it one of the most prevalent commercial duty engines on the market today.

The Blue Bird gasoline-powered school bus will be available in 2016.

Summer Swing of Things

Our new Service Building opened in the spring of 2015, and is going strong through this very busy summer. All ten (10) bays are full of vehicles in for annual inspections, heavy duty engine repairs, or any other number of complex service jobs. We have a great team of Technicians and Service Writers who are enjoying the new digs on our expansive property here in Boring.

We welcome anyone in the neighborhood, or passing by on their way over Mt Hood, to stop in for a quick tour of the new building. We’d love to show you around!

 

 

Construction Progress

As the year draws to a successful close, we are that much closer to the opening of our new additional Service Building. We expect to be moved in late February and the building is really taking shape. Stay posted for more updates as opening day approaches.

On another note, check out our awesome find from the Pendleton Grain Growers auction earlier this month. It’s 1950s vintage and the neon still works …

neon sign

Breaking Ground!

On September 23, 2014,  construction began on our new Service building on our current property in Boring, OR. This exciting expansion offers:

  • Freestanding building with 14,175 sq. ft. single story plus 2,100 sq.ft. mezzanine
  • Ten (10) total service bays, 20′ wide by 52′ deep
  • Covered & paved pickup/dropoff area
  • Large customer waiting lounge

Estimated date of completion is late January. Watch for updates on our progress and pardon our dust if you come to our facility.

We are very excited to embark on this “next step” in providing all our service customers with honest and thorough repairs and maintenance for their vehicles.

Check out what the new building will look like – WBS Service Building Elevations

Blue Bird to be Sold, Taken Public

Following are excerpts from yesterday’s exciting announcement about the future of Blue Bird Corporation:

September 22, 2014 – Hennessy Capital Acquisition Corporation has entered into a definitive purchase agreement to acquire all of the outstanding capital stock of School Bus Holdings Inc., an indirect parent company of Blue Bird Corporation, from The Traxis Group B.V., which is majority owned by funds affiliated with Cerberus Capital Management, L.P.

Blue Bird is the leading independent designer and manufacturer of school buses, with more than 550,000 buses sold since its formation in 1927 and nearly 200,000 buses in operation today. In addition, Blue Bird is the fastest-growing major school bus manufacturer in North America, with market share increasing in each of the past four years, and is the market leader in alternative-fuel applications with its propane-powered and compressed natural gas-powered school buses.

“HCAC is extremely pleased to partner with Blue Bird’s management and Cerberus to introduce Blue Bird to the public markets,” said Daniel J. Hennessy, Chairman and CEO of HCAC. “We are acquiring an iconic American brand with an 87-year history of innovation and product leadership led by a superb management team at a very attractive price. We believe Blue Bird fits squarely into our stated investment criteria, and that as a public company, Blue Bird will have the capital structure, ownership support, operating flexibility and enhanced public image to achieve its maximum potential.”

Chan Galbato, CEO of Cerberus Operations and Advisory Company, LLC, and non-executive Chairman of Blue Bird, stated, “Blue Bird is a terrific, well-run company with great people and products and we are thrilled to continue our longstanding relationship with them, as Cerberus will retain a significant ownership interest in the company. We look forward to sharing in the significant value-creation opportunity that Blue Bird offers, in partnership with HCAC, Blue Bird’s management and our new stockholders.”

The Company will continue to be led by current Blue Bird President and CEO Phil Horlock, who added, “We are very excited for Blue Bird to become a public company by partnering with HCAC and delighted that Cerberus will remain a major stockholder. Under Cerberus’ stewardship, our Blue Bird team has transformed the business through launching exciting new products and features, improving quality and cost structure, and growing sales and market share. We believe this transaction will enable us to maintain our growth momentum with our exceptional workforce building the world’s finest school bus.”

For more information or if you have any questions, please contact Mollie Blagg at Western Bus Sales at (800) 258-2473.

News stories:

School Transportation News – Blue Bird Stock to Go Public After Parent Company is Acquired

School Bus Fleet – Blue Bird to be Acquired, Will be Publicly Traded Company

NBC 41 Macon, GA – Blue Bird Corporation Goes Public (video)

Join Our Service Tech Team!

We currently have openings to join our growing Service Team. We’re looking for a few good technicians in the Portland metro area who are interested in working for a family-owned business with an excellent reputation and stellar group of team members. Are you looking to join a team that feels like family, that works hard but has fun too, coupled with a very competitive benefit package? Then read on and contact us about this great opportunity!

DIESEL TECHNICIAN – 
WBS is looking for an experienced gas /diesel technician. The position is full time and is located at our main office. WBS is an ASE certified repair facility. We are a NAPA Certified Truck repair shop with an onsite NAPA parts store and warehouse.

WBS is a certified repair facility for Carrier, TransAir, Webasto, Allison, Onspot, Ricon, Braun, Blue Bird among many others. Preference will be given to truck, bus and / or heavy equipment experience. Knowledge of Ford & GM chassis is a definite asset. The applicant should possess strong trouble shooting skills. The mechanical work will be varied and will performed on truck, school and commercial buses, and RVs.

The pay scale is competitive and will be determined based upon experience and ability to perform the necessary job duties. Robust medical/dental/vision benefits, 401k match, profit sharing, life insurance and long term disability insurance are just some of the many fringe benefits offered.

INTERESTED?

Please email your resume to the attention of: Luke Myers

Faxes are also welcome: 503-905-0003

OR you may call for more information: 503-905-0002

 

Blue Bird Tech Training @ STN

Blue Bird is now accepting enrollment for a three-day technical training course held at the STN Expo in Reno, Nevada throughout the dates of July 28 – 30, 2014. This training will cover technical topics on all Blue Bird and Micro Bird products. Subjects include, but are not limited to:

  • Electrical
  • Multiplex Diagnostics
  • Instrumentation
  • Engine Emissions
  • Bendix ADB22X Air Disc BRakes
  • ROUSH CleanTech Propane Autogas Fuel System

This training provides the perfect opportunity for technicians to further their Blue Bird expertise and interact with other school bus technicians. Additionally, participants have the opportunity to network with hundreds of school district and contractor professionals across North America. Cost for the training is $250 which also includes admission to the STN Expo (trade show) and the STN Social.

Details & Registration Link: www.blue-bird.com/techtraining

Download the 2014 STN Tech Training Flyer

Propane Ride & Drive Event 3/20/14

Mark your calendars for another WBS Propane Ride & Drive Event featuring the best-selling Blue Bird Propane-Powered Vision School Bus!

March 20, 2014
10:00 am to 2:00 pm

  • Kick the tires, take it for a spin
  • Learn about all the success stories of other Oregon school districts switching to propane and Propane-Powered Blue Bird Visions
  • Meet and ask questions of OEM reps from Blue Bird and ROUSH, plus propane retailer Ferrellgas
  • Enjoy a free lunch

Please RSVP your interest in attending HERE . We look forward to seeing you in March!

Holiday Wishes!

Everyone here at Western Bus Sales would like to wish all our customers and suppliers a Merry Christmas and Happy New Year! We would not be here without your support year in and year out.  2013 has been both an exciting and challenging year and we are looking forward to an even better 2014 through the proverbial windshield.

We continue to strive to meet our company’s mission and values:

To offer reliable, high-quality products and dependable customer service to Northwest transportation providers, allowing them to provide safe and efficient services to their customers at the lowest total cost.

    • To Do the Right Thing
    • To Take Care of Our People
    • To Consistently Provide Excellent Customer Service
    • To Build Long-Lasting Relationships
    • To Foster an Innovative and Creative Spirit
    • To Respect All People
    • To Create Shareholder Value
    • To Give Back to Our Communities

Thank you again to all our customers, OEM partners, parts & service suppliers, and business partners.

Our Best from WBS to You,
~Mollie 

Blue Bird, Synovia Partner to Offer Factory-Direct GPS in School Buses

Blue Bird Corporation and Synovia Solutions announced a new option to activate GPS fleet management solutions via a package installed at the factory to help customers reduce total cost of ownership.

“Blue Bird is pleased to offer this exciting school bus innovation that provides customers with the ability to maximize their fleet’s efficiency and deliver significant operational savings,” said Phil Horlock, president and CEO of Blue Bird Corporation. “Innovation and safety are at the forefront of all initiatives at Blue Bird and with this core premise, we partnered with the best GPS fleet management provider in the business, Synovia Solutions. Blue Bird Connect allows districts and contractors to save thousands of dollars each year. It is truly a smart choice for efficiency and savings.”

Blue Bird Connect is an option that can be activated at no upfront cost, as all pre-wiring is performed at the factory, or added to existing buses, regardless of brand, said Blue Bird. The GPS offers core functionality including comparative analysis, student tracking, a parent portal, safety reporting, engine diagnostics and fuel economy tracking. Blue Bird also said Blue Bird Connect includes “unique features that are not available from the competition,” such as integrated driver time and attendance with plan versus actual comparisons, dashboards of Key Performance Indicators (KPIs), the ability to schedule the delivery of reports to management and the all- inclusive monthly fee per vehicle with no upfront costs.

“Synovia Solutions is excited about broadening our reach into the school market with an OEM solution and teaming with Blue Bird,” said Jon King, CEO of Synovia Solutions. “Their vision for providing value-add to their customers with an OEM GPS fleet management solution fits strategically with the Synovia Solutions strategy of reaching into the market directly and with partners who place the same value on quality, service, safety and saving.”

Kevin Kneafie, director of transportation at Tippecanoe School Corporation near Indianapolis, said GPS from Synovia Solutions has saved his district an estimated $10,000 to $15,000 each year, “just with our field and athletic trips alone.”

Download the Blue Bird Connect Brochure. Then contact us at (800) 258-2473 for more information on this exciting partnership!

Sad News Here at WBS

It is with a heavy heart that I post news of the passing of longtime Western Bus Sales employee, Orin Stephens. Orin joined the WBS team November 4, 2002. Originally brought in to manage our Parts Warehouse, he showed a knack for customer service and parts sales, working his way up to Customer Service Supervisor in the Parts Department.

Always full of funny stories and a great listening ear, Orin was a caring and dedicated individual. His dedication is underscored by the fact that, while he was sick himself, he was more concerned with both other people’s well being as well as taking care of our customers.  Orin is already dearly missed; he made our organization better and we will continue to honor his memory.

Please keep the Stephens family, as well as the WBS family, in your thoughts and prayers.

~ Mollie

Late Model Child Care Buses!

Check out our Used Bus section for information on the late model white 14 passenger buses currently in inventory. These used child care buses are lease returns from a national child care company and offer you great benefits:

  • 14 passenger capacity doesn’t generally require a commercial driver’s license
  • School bus construction offers the highest level of safety and durability when compared to 15 passenger vans
  • 2004, 2005 and 2006 model year buses
  • Low mileage, some as low as 16,000 miles
  • Vehicles have been through a complete inspection with needed repairs already made
  • Rear air conditioning for passenger comfort
  • 4.8L GM gasoline engine offers excellent fuel economy
  • Most buses have 3 point lap/shoulder belt seats for extra security & safety

These buses are perfect for child care centers, private schools, camps, churches, or any other application where  a 14 passenger vehicle is used.

Inventory can change quickly. Contact Donna Bracy in our Used Bus Department at (800) 258-2473 to reserve your bus today!

Welcome!

Welcome to the new & improved westernbus.com website! We have been feverishly putting the finishing touches on the site and are very proud to present it to you. Some new features include:

  1. Enhanced New & Used Bus Inventory Search, including videos of most buses available
  2. Online Parts Store for those parts currently on our Quarterly Specials
  3. Expanded content for all new school and commercial bus lines we represent, including videos
  4. Deep Service Reference content such as recalls, bulletins, tech tips, and more
  5. News and blog posts

Take a look around, kick the tires, and let us know what you think! Any feedback is welcome. Contact Mollie Blagg at mblagg@westernbus.com. Thanks for stopping by!