People surfing the web for moose test results may not be very interested in electric school buses. Why in the heck would a school bus even bother attempting a moose test in the first place?
While the answer may be very obvious to some folks, others are probably wondering. I'll start by saying I drop off and pick up my kids from school every day, and rarely a day that goes by when I don't see school buses speeding through neighborhoods, rolling past stop signs, and taking corners with an almost sports-car-like momentum. It's scary, to say the least.
Driving a school bus might rank as one of the hardest, most stressful, and most unrewarding jobs in the world. These drivers are expected to maintain a schedule, get to every school on time, get to the bus stops on time, assure that the buses are back at the yard and ready for their next run, all while keeping hundreds, if not thousands, of kids safe on a daily basis. Bus drivers must keep children safe inside the bus while watching for and avoiding pedestrians crossing the street as they drive into and out of busy neighborhoods and parking lots.
Not only will the future pave the way for many more electric school buses, but also buses that have state-of-the-art safety systems to assure that they can handle the worst conditions. That said, Motiv Power Systems has been testing its Electronic Stability Control System (ESC) with impressive success. Motiv writes:
"Vehicles equipped with this advanced technology can assist drivers on their daily routes during sudden turns or decelerations, which might otherwise cause roll-over or skidding due to loss of road traction."
According to Green Car Congress, the Transportation Research Center (TRC) recently performed the Double Lane Change Handling test to analyze the system's "computer-controlled braking of individual wheels to help operators maintain control in critical or hazardous driving conditions."
Motiv notes that its EPIC4 system is the first of its kind to pass such a test, and the system can be implemented into all medium-duty Class 4 electric vehicle platforms. Founder and Chief Technology Officer at Motiv Jim Castelaz shared via Green Car Congress:
"I’m proud of Motiv to lead the medium-duty EV industry in the adoption of this critical safety technology—electric vehicles should be held to the same or higher safety standards than their internal combustion alternatives. While it is an especially high-impact safety feature for those EPIC chassis built into school and shuttle buses and one more step in maximizing passenger safety, this technology also provides safety for pedestrians, bikers, and others nearby."
The company says the new feature should be available on the Ford F-59 commercial platform by 2022.