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article imageLocal transit agency holds an Open House event for its riders Special

By Jonathan Farrell     Feb 28, 2014 in Lifestyle
San Carlos - Public transit riders in San Mateo County, just south of San Francisco, got a rare behind-the-scenes look at the SamTrans agency’s bus operations on February 22.
Held at SamTrans headquarters, on San Carlos Avenue in San Carlos, the open house event began at 11: AM that Saturday morning, with SamTrans Board Chair Jeff Gee cutting the ribbon on one of SamTrans’ first hybrid buses, which were officially introduced to SamTrans back in Oct.
The open house provided SamTrans an opportunity to get riders more acquainted with the new fleet as well as its improved routes and service implementations.
SamTrans has 25 of the diesel electric hybrid vehicles in operation throughout its service area. The low-floor buses use long-life, non-hazardous, maintenance-free batteries to capture and store braking energy and advanced solid state controllers to manage and blend power sources. For the community and the customers this means reduced emissions and smoother, quieter buses. For the district it means using less fuel, which translates into improved operating costs.
"About 100 people attended the event," said Christine Dunn, public information officer, speaking on behalf of SamTrans to this reporter. "The hybrid buses look nearly identical to our other buses," she added. "So, most people don’t even realize that they are riding on a hybrid bus."
At the SamTrans Open House event on Feb. 22  2014  riders and community members got to meet the spec...
At the SamTrans Open House event on Feb. 22, 2014, riders and community members got to meet the special SamTrans K-9 Unit.
Courtesy of SamTrans media department
"There is a general concern for the environment on the part of the public, Dunn said, so people are always pleased to learn that they are riding a hybrid bus." "In fact, taking public transportation is one way a single individual can make a positive impact on reducing pollution," she said.
Hybrid buses will be used for the short trip across U.S. Highway 101 to the agency’s operations and maintenance facility. At the facility, the public will be treated to a guided tour of the bus dispatching center and a demonstration of how buses are cleaned and maintained.
South Base Superintendent of Bus Maintenance Jerie Moeller offers an enthusiastic tour of SamTrans  ...
South Base Superintendent of Bus Maintenance Jerie Moeller offers an enthusiastic tour of SamTrans' maintenance facility.
Courtesy of SamTrans of San Mateo County, CA, media dept.
After the ceremonial ribbon cutting, visitors also had the opportunity to check out employment opportunities, get transit information, and meet Transit Police Officers and their special K-9 Unit. It was a family-friendly event serving lemonade and popcorn.
Opened in 1984, the SamTrans headquarters, operations and maintenance facility is home to 112 buses. it serves as the dispatching center for routes serving southern San Mateo County. On weekday mornings, the base is a bee-hive of activity as more than 130 bus operators report for duty. Buses are ready to roll, thanks to an overnight crew that cleans and maintains the vehicles. SamTrans provides a vital service for more than 41,000 riders on an average weekday. To learn more about SamTrans, visit the web site, visit the page on Facebook or follow SamTrans on Twitter.
More about SamTrans, San Mateo County, San Carlos, California, Hybrid bus
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