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Hundredth low emission bus delivered to Metro Tasmania

METRO Tasmania has taken delivery of its 100th low emission, fully accessible Tasmanian-built bus (no 899).

Metro chairman Tim Gardner said the bus replacement program over the past three years not only supported the revitalisation of Metro’s bus fleet, but provided new jobs and further strengthened the Tasmanian manufacturing sector.

“Metro awarded the contract to Bustech, an Australian bus builder who joined with Tasmanian company, Elphinstone, as its Tasmanian-based manufacturing partner,” he said.

“The local production of the buses resulted in 20 new direct advanced manufacturing jobs on the north-west coast and more than 60 indirect jobs in Tasmania.”

Mr Gardner said in 2016 Metro had one of the oldest public bus fleets in Australia.

“Metro now has one of the youngest average fleet ages of 8.1 years, well below the industry average of 12 years and almost half the average age of the fleet in 2016 before the first bus was delivered,” he said.

“Importantly, Metro’s fleet is fully Disability Discrimination Act compliant, well ahead of the December 2022 target date set by the Act.”

The 100 new buses – the first of which was delivered in 2017 – are more fuel efficient and require less maintenance than the buses they replaced.

Metro estimates the program will reduce its carbon footprint by at least 20,000 tonnes of greenhouse gas equivalent over 20 years.

All of the new Bustech buses are air-conditioned and are low-floor meaning easier access to all of Metro’s services especially for the mobility impaired leading to a much more modern and comfortable experience on board.

In December 2020, Metro extended its contract with Bustech for 26 additional buses to be built at the Elphinstone facility in Wynyard and continue to support local manufacturing and local jobs.

Mr Gardner said these 26 buses were the next generation in Bustech vehicle and would have the capacity to transition from Euro-6 diesel to battery electric or hydrogen drive train.

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