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Oklahoma, Dish Add Over 400 Alt-Fuel Trucks

The Oklahoma Department of Transportation and satellite television provider Dish have begun taking delivery of large orders of trucks powered by compressed natural gas and propane.

ODOT is to receive 242 new 2013 Ram 2500 compressed natural gas pickup trucks (pictured) from Chrysler Group LLC. The delivery is Chrysler’s largest customer order since production of the trucks began in October.

ODOT will use the Ram CNG pickups primarily as service trucks on the state’s roads and highways. Some 13 Ram Truck dealers have landed contracts with 19 states to supply their fleets with the model, Chrysler says.

Meanwhile, Dish has used the NTEA Work Truck Show to unveil the first of 200 ROUSH CleanTech propane autogas-fueled Ford E-250 cargo vans that will enter the company’s fleet in 2013. The trucks will support residential and commercial customer service in Atlanta, Chicago, Detroit, Los Angeles and San Francisco.

The satellite-television company estimates that the vehicles will lower its carbon dioxide emissions by 12.5 million pounds over the lifetime of the fleet’s operation, compared to their gasoline-powered counterparts. Dish expects to save about $2,500 per vehicle in annual lifecycle costs, due to a 55 percent reduction in fuel costs and the cleaner burning properties of propane autogas.

Dish researched multiple alternative fuels available in the marketplace. The company says that four factors made propane autogas the best fit: cost savings, national availability of a domestically sourced fuel, on-site fueling benefits and OEM choices that meet service requirements. Propane autogas vehicles emit fewer greenhouse gases and smog-producing hydrocarbons than conventionally fueled vehicles.

Currently, propane autogas is the only alternative fuel that Dish is implementing.

In July last year, shipping firm DHL Express took delivery of a fleet of 100 Ford E-250 cargo vans, each equipped with a ROUSH CleanTech liquid propane autogas fuel system. The trucks are now in operation in California, Florida, Georgia, Missouri and Texas.

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