"First they ignore you. Then they laugh at you. Then they fight you. Then you win." ~Mahatma Gandhi
Steve, did you ever receive any additional training for operating a hybrid? Since it brakes and accelerates differently, I guess it doesn't fall in the parameters of the "culture of safety".
I drive a 60' hybrid everyday here in Seattle. The acceleration is so smooth, less jerkiness, and quieter too. While the diesel buses seems to get up hills faster, overall I enjoy the hybrids.
That's what I've heard - and experienced the few times I've ridden a hybrid. They are SOOOO much smoother than the straight diesels.You can definitely tell the difference, either between 2561/2562 and any other TriMet D40LF, or comparing a Metro DE60LF to a D60HF...in fact Metro's high-floors just bounce you all over the place. I hated them on the 174.
I thought that hybrids are better for hill climbing, since electricity provides power better than burning oil.
The electric motor is only up to 30mph, then the gas motor kicks in. My experience with the uphill climbs is on freeways.
When I was at Center (year and a half ago), the two hybrids were just in the pool of assignable low-floors. It did seem like they picked a route and always assigned them to that line for the period of a sign-up. There wasn't any special training; you just found that morning that you had one of the hybrids to drive. The odd part is in the slowing down of the bus. You take your foot off the accelerator and the bus instantly slows down. (Regenerative braking - bus momentum is turned into electricity.) It's like driving a manual shift car around in first gear all the time.
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