Family-owned New South Wales regional bus operator, Sapphire Coast Buslines will become the first operator in the country to bring Volgren’s new low-floor Urban bus used in rural and regional area’s as a city/school bus with seatbelts into its fleet.
Currently under build at Volgren’s Dandenong manufacturing facility, the new combination, built on a Volvo B8RLE-E5 chassis, is expected to be in service by early 2019.
Jamie Klemm, managing director of Sapphire Coast Buslines, said the new vehicle is a replacement bus under their current contract.
“Our Rural and Regional Government contract stipulates that all school buses by 2020 must have seatbelts, and for this reason one of our low floor buses selected for replacement will be fitted with seatbelts.
“We wanted to continue with our current suppliers being Volgren and Volvo and we’re really looking forward to the new combination.”
Sapphire Coast Buslines first partnered with Volgren in 2013 and now operate 9 Enduras in a fleet of 40 buses. According to Klemm it’s a relationship built on trust, quality vehicles and service.
“Volgren are easy to work with, provide great service and a consistent quality product. They’ve always been willing to work with us to ensure we have consistency across our fleet and they work well with all the prime contractors we deal with including Scania, Volvo and Iveco.”
“Since our very first delivery, the Endura has been an incredibly reliable bus for us. It’s a modern, tidy looking bus and the fact it’s made from aluminium and won’t corrode, is perfect for coastal conditions.”
The Sapphire Coast is New South Wales’ south-eastern most region, running from the New South Wales-Victoria border to Bermagui. Each year, the bus company transports more than 2400 students to 14 schools in Eden, Bega, Wolumla, Pambula, Pambula Beach, Merimbula and Tathra. The business also runs an extensive route and demand-responsive service for the broader community.
CEO of Volgren, Peter Dale, said he expects interest in the new low-floor buses with seatbelts to grow in New South Wales as regional and rural operators procure new buses.
“The fast tracking of seatbelts on all regional and rural school buses and city buses is an important safety initiative by Transport for NSW. As a bus body manufacturer it was important we developed a solution that would meet the needs of operators who use the same bus for school trips and general commuters.”
Dale said that since commencing the build for the low-floor rural and regional urban bus, Volgren had received orders for the new combination from major bus operators in NSW.