PORTLAND, Ore. — Cascade Sierra Solutions and Shorepower Technologies recently completed installation of power outlets at 50 truck stops nationwide, electrifying 1,397 parking spaces in 30 states.
Truckers now have more opportunities to plug in to run air conditioners, heaters or appliances and avoid idling main engines for power. 29 locations also provide 3-phase power for trailer Transport Refrigeration Units at the power stations.
Plugging in instead of idling saves on fuel costs, the trucker's largest operating expense, and keeps the air clean. "Fleet managers and owner/operators alike appreciate and understand saving money on fuel," said Jon Gustafson, Chief Technology Officer at Cascade Sierra Solutions. "The avoided costs go directly to their bottom line."
The $53 million project was made possible by a $22.2 million grant from the U.S. Department of Energy (DOE) and $29.4 million in additional matching funds from motor carriers and truck stop operators. The goal of the project is to reduce the use of diesel fuel, which reduces U. S. dependence on foreign oil.
Approximately $10 million was dedicated to creation of the network of plug in stations. Cascade Sierra Solutions deployed another $10 million in equipment purchase rebates to help truck owners install Shorepower-ready idle reduction systems for cab comfort and trailer refrigeration. In all, 23 equipment suppliers and their dealers benefited from over $42 million in increased sales from 2011-2013. Cascade Sierra Solutions will continue to study industry adoption of truck stop electrification through 2014 with findings reported back to the U.S. Department of Energy.
Reducing highway corridor noise and reducing air pollution in fifty communities are added benefits from the project. "Truck stop owners and managers understand that reducing air pollutants and noise levels support local community efforts to provide a safe, clean living and work environment," Jeff Kim, President and CEO of Shorepower Technologies said. "Idling engines create noise and emissions that can affect quality of sleep and driver health. We are proud to have completed construction on 50 new locations along major Interstates. We now have a total of 62 locations throughout the country where drivers can save fuel and get a comfortable night's rest."
To locate truck stops offering the Shorepower plug in stations, visit shorepowerconnect.com
Diesel savings benefit the entire industry, from owner-operators to large fleets. Sharon Rogers owns a Freightliner and uses plug in power for her air conditioner when at truck stops. Her reaction is typical of regular users of the plug in stations. "It's much more affordable now to keep your truck warm or cool. Price is the biggest draw for me but it's nice and quiet, too. I appreciate having options for No-Idle parking!"
Royal Jones, CEO of New Mexico-based Mesilla Valley Transportation, operating 1,300 tractors, reports that electric power helps his bottom line. From the July 22, 2013 issue of Transport Topics, "Idling the main engine sends about $4 an hour's worth of fuel going up the exhaust pipe. We use electricity when ever we find it-our idling time has dropped dramatically from 50 percent to 3 percent and 4 percent during winter and spring."
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