Leading the charge
The Blue Bird electric school bus designated as e16 is entering its third year of picking up and dropping off West Fargo students. “It’s been an interesting journey for us,” said Brad Redmond, director of transportation at West Fargo Public Schools (WFPS).
On average, the electric bus loses 30% of its maximum range in cold weather. After experiencing the first winter, WFPS teamed up with Blue Bird to give the e16 bus two significant updates to help preserve range. The first update was installing an insulated pack that wraps around the batteries and coolant lines. The second was a software update to preheat the bus while it’s still plugged in. These updates allow the driver to heat the bus’ cabin before leaving the parking garage to start their route—meaning they won’t lose any miles on their daily range through heating the bus to temperature.
WFPS is a cold weather electric bus pioneer, paving a path toward more potential electric school buses. By educating students and providing firsthand experience of riding an electric bus, there is a chance these future drivers might think twice about purchasing a mainstream vehicle and instead opt for an electric one.
CCEC public chargers
In 2020, we partnered with West Acres Shopping Center, Hornbacher’s Gateway West, and the FM Convention and Visitors Bureau to bring three Level 3 fast chargers to the area. These chargers are the first of their kind on our system and some of the first in North Dakota. Based on sessions from October 2020 through August 2021, the average cost for charging is $13.35 for 28 kWh of energy and 46 minutes. Depending upon the vehicle, this is approximately 100 miles of range.
We installed our Level 3 DC fast chargers in easy-to-access locations for travelers close to the interstate. These chargers are close to restaurants, shopping, and more to provide EV drivers something to occupy time while waiting for a full charge.
According to Cass County Electric’s ChargePoint analytics, in the lifetime of our Level 3 public EV charging stations, we have avoided 4,092 kg of greenhouse gas emissions – that’s like planting 105 trees and letting them grow for 10 years! Together, let’s continue to lead the charge of electric technology.
Cass County Electric, Fargo Police Department, and Fargo Parks District partnered to bring the first all-electric patrol motorcycle to the area.
The electric motorcycle has many advantages for both the public. Officer Marvig was the original assigned rider. He patrolled places where other officers rarely or never get to with their vehicles, which offers a safer trail atmosphere for parkgoers. “There is peace of mind knowing that the police are around even when things are good.”
The Fargo Police Department officially oversees the electric patrol bike and uses it for community events and some traffic stops. By utilizing the bike to patrol the parks and educate the community it creates a positive impact, offering a roadmap and proving how electric vehicle technology is a unique and reliable tool.
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