Florida Roadway Fleet Surpasses 1 Million Gallons of Propane Autogas

Since 1961, Roy Jorgensen Associates has provided maintenance consultant services, facility maintenance operations, and roadway maintenance services throughout the U.S. One of the roadway programs Jorgensen oversees is the Road Ranger Service Patrol Fleet. The fleet provides incident management response services and limited no-cost highway assistance to motorists to improve highway safety for emergency responders and the motoring public. In 2015, Jorgensen collaborated with Alliance AutoGas (AAG) to begin a pilot propane autogas program. Autogas has many benefits including decreased fuel cost per gallon, greater vehicle uptime, and reduced harmful emissions.

“After learning about the work Jorgensen was doing with the Road Ranger fleet and how much mileage their fleet puts on throughout a year, I knew AAG could offer a great autogas program that would improve their operation,” says Ed Hoffman, president of Blossman Services, the autogas system distribution partner of AAG. Some 40 autogas vehicles used by the Road Ranger fleet operate throughout Florida’s southeastern coast. Since beginning their program in 2015, the fleet recently celebrated refueling with its 1 millionth gallon of autogas this past July.

“Our autogas program has been an eye-opener on what alternative fuel can do for fleets,” says Ernie Molina, vice president of Roy Jorgensen Associates. “The cost saving benefit compared to diesel or gasoline was evident, however, the other benefits make a big difference for the Road Ranger fleet.” One of those benefits include AAG providing the infrastructure for a personal refueling center. “The maintenance vehicles have to refuel often, as they’re providing service 24/7 every day of the year. Having access to our own refueling station for whenever we need it is a game changer,” says Molina.

From extreme temperatures to hurricane season, the Florida climate requires durable transportation. The majority of the vehicles in the Road Ranger Patrol Fleet travel more than 100,000 miles annually. “One aspect that we like about our autogas vehicles and working with AAG is how reliable the systems are. We can count on our autogas vehicles no matter what the weather conditions are, and we do not have to worry about fuel prices inflating like gasoline or diesel. We also save on things such as DEF fluid.”

Another key aspect Jorgensen was interested in when they started the autogas pilot program was making a difference environmentally. Propane-converted vehicles emit 25% fewer greenhouse gas emissions than vehicles running on gasoline and 80% fewer smog-producing hydrocarbon emissions than vehicles running on diesel. For the Road Ranger fleet, using more than a million gallons of autogas is the equivalent to planting 280,761 trees that grow for 10 years according to EPA calculations.

When asked about that milestone, Molina says, “Knowing the environmental difference Jorgensen and the Road Ranger fleet has made by using a million gallons of autogas is quite remarkable. Jorgensen continues to be impressed by the Road Ranger autogas program and we will be mindful of what autogas can provide moving forward.”

SOURCE: The Weekly Propane Newsletter, November 19, 2020. Weekly Propane Newsletter subscribers receive all the latest posted and spot prices from major terminals and refineries around the U.S. delivered to inboxes every week. Receive a center spread of posted prices with hundreds of postings updated each week, along with market analysis, insightful commentary, and much more not found elsewhere.