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UK bus operator First Bus to begin trialing zero emission buses

UK bus operator First Bus to begin trialing zero emission buses
© First Bus

U.K.-based bus company First Bus announced Monday that it would begin trials of a zero-emissions vehicle developed by Arrival, an electric vehicle manufacturer.

The companies are partnering on the design of a 36-occupant vehicle that they estimated would be roughly 40 percent lighter than other electric buses on the market, according to the First Bus website. Trials are set to begin later in 2021.

"As leaders in sustainable mobility, we’re excited to announce our partnership with Arrival, helping us bring some of the most innovative zero-emission vehicles on the market onto the UK’s streets for our customers and partners. We’re proud to be the first operator in the UK to trial Arrival’s electric buses and look forward to working together to accelerate the transition to zero-emissions in our sector," said Janette Bell, First Bus's managing director.

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"Their ground-breaking technology is also expected to allow for improved customer service, and we’re looking forward to seeing how customers react to the new buses when they’re trialled later this year," Bell added.

First Bus, which is one of the largest bus services in the U.K., has previously pledged to run a zero-emissions fleet by 2035 and plans to end purchases of diesel-powered buses by the end of next year.

Officials in California voted in 2018 to transition the state's public bus transportation to a zero-emissions fleet by 2040, a decision that came partially in response to the state's air pollution issues.