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section from SP’s research. Fuel tanks must comply with applica- ble standards. Diesel is still a big one, but alternative fuels such as Liquefied Petro- leum Gas (LPG), Compressed Natural Gas (CNG), and hybrids are on the rise. A small part of our discussion in Reno will hit on the alternatives. Flammability standards for interior ma-

terials such as seats and floors. Seats shall be constructed with materials that enable them to meet the criteria of the School Bus Seat Upholstery Fire Block Test. (Check out my previous article, "Where Tere’s Smoke," on my unscientific testing). Rosen will give us more perspective on testing in Reno. Would a national and/or international

standard on fire suppression be valuable for the school transportation industry? Maybe by doing so we can get a reduction of loss of lives, loss of buses and societal cost.

INTERNATIONAL STANDARDS Since we are on the topic of fire sup-

pression and standards, we thought it was appropriate to share some perspective from Rosen, who has done extensive testing on bus engine compartment fires in Europe. First, he

works for the SP Technical Research Insti- tute of Sweden, which is a leading interna- tional research institute working closely with customers to create value, deliver high-quality input in all parts of the innovation chain, and thus playing an important part is assisting towards sustainable development. Second, SP has developed an internation- al test standard for evaluating fire suppres- sion systems in bus engine compartments. Te objectives of this project have been to create a safer environment for passengers and bus drivers worldwide

REDUCE THE LOSS OF PROPERTY Design a standard that will evaluate the

firefighter performance of different suppres- sion systems in a well-defined, objective and comparable way. When we are in Reno, Rosen will further explain the results of the testing and what standards may be needed on an international level. From my firefighter perspective, I see one challenge in that the testing has been done only with diesel fueled mock-ups. Al- though representative of the majority of buses on the road, we will certainly have to obtain suppression system operational data for the

Lt. Paul Hasenmeier is a firefighter with the City of Huron (Ohio) Fire Department and is also a paramedic, fire inspector, SCUBA diver and an instructor. He has a bachelor’s degree in fire science and a master’s in public adminis- tration. Hasenmeier has gained knowledge in numerous technical rescue disciplines, and is a member of Ohio’s Region 1 USAR team. He is an adjunct instructor for Bowling Green State University Fire School and an adjunct faculty for Columbia Southern University. He can be reached at or

alternative-fueled buses moving forward.

NOT THE END, BUT THE START After re-reading this article, I feel I may

have created a piece that lists more questions than answers, but it at least provides an out- line for greater discussion at the 2014 STN EXPO in Reno. It’s not too often that we can get industry leading experts and a group of outside industry consultants together to focus the attention on what needs to be done to improve fire safety and training. Ultimately, we are all in this for the chil- dren, they are why we do what we do. l

56 School Transportation News May 2014

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