Natural Gas – Conversions, Vehicles and Technology

Wash. City Converting Refuse Fleet to CNG

September 29, 2014

The City of Tacoma, Wash., will begin converting trucks in its refuse fleet to run on compressed natural gas (CNG) and install a time-fill fueling station to support the vehicles.

Starting later this year, the city will begin replacing aging diesel refuse trucks with dedicated CNG refuse trucks, said Fred Chun, the city's fleet services manager. The conversion of the fleet to CNG is expected to take five years and eventually save the city 500,000 gallons in fuel consumption per year.

Additionally, the city will begin converting existing half-ton and one-ton pickup trucks with CNG conversion kits so they can operate in bi-fuel CNG mode.

While the light-duty fleet will fuel up using a fast-fill system, the refuse trucks will use a time-fill fueling system. The city's CNG fueling station has been completed, and work continues to install the compressor system. TruStar Energy is designing and constructing the system with its PFS Elite Series portable fueling technology. For the time-fill use, the city will initially use a 100 DGE/hour configuration with the PFS Elite 225, according to a TruStar release.

The city is considering converting 80 vehicles to CNG. It has ordered a heavy-duty front-load refuse truck and plans to acquire CNG-powered tractors, roll-off chassis and rear-loading trucks in the next year, according to the company.

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