City of Sacramento to Purchase 53 LNG Refuse Trucks for $15.8M

August 24, 2011

The City of Sacramento, Calif., will purchase 53 more LNG refuse trucks for its fleet.
The City of Sacramento, Calif., will purchase 53 more LNG refuse trucks for its fleet.

SACRAMENTO, CA - On August 23, the City of Sacramento Fleet Management was given authorization by City Council to purchase 53 new Liquid Natural Gas (LNG) refuse trucks for a total bid award of $15.8 million.

The Department of General Services, Fleet Management Division, and the Department of Utilities, Solid Waste Division, have worked cooperatively in developing specifications that will best meet the operational requirements of Solid Waste. Additionally, Fleet Management staff determined the most cost-effective strategy for this purchase was to use a City contract for the truck chassis in conjunction with a cooperative purchasing agreement for the Wayne and Newway truck bodies. 

"The savings anticipated from the reduced operating cost of the 53 new American LaFrance LNG refuse trucks with the Cummins Westport ISLG-320HP are expected to more than cover the annual debt finance payments on a five-year loan," said City of Sacramento Fleet Manager Keith Leech. "The 2011 or newer refuse truck chassis will achieve a 98 percent reduction in particulate matter and a 99 percent reduction in nitrogen oxide emissions." 

The 53 LNG refuse trucks will replace existing refuse trucks that have been kept in the Solid Waste fleet well beyond their useful lives. This was done to meet expanded service levels from increasing the recycling pickup from bi-weekly to weekly and from the growth of the containerized yard waste program. According to Leech, replacing these vehicles now provides the following benefits:

  • Saves more than $3 million in potential on-going maintenance and fuel costs by eliminating 53 older refuse trucks;
  • Saves $425,000 in particulate trap retrofit costs that would be required if the 2002 model-year refuse trucks are not replaced (17 vehicles at $25,000 cost per vehicle);
  • Reduces carbon emissions by taking out of service old, inefficient diesel-burning vehicles and replacing them with cleaner Liquefied Natural Gas (LNG) units; and
  • Reduces overtime costs associated with routes left uncollected due to repair downtime and unavailability of spares.

The large acquisition re-establishes a seven-year vehicle replacement program designed to retire aging vehicles on time and establish a spare ratio of 25 percent, thereby reducing costly maintenance and fuel costs, according to Leech.


  1. 1. Jerry Shrum [ August 25, 2011 @ 11:31AM ]

    So for a mere $288,000 per truck, they can start replenishing their fleet. This will never pencil out in savings in reality like it does on paper. Just my thinking. Let me know how it really figures out in 5 years. JRS

  2. 2. Philip Locker [ August 26, 2011 @ 06:15AM ]

    What about refueling infrastructure. LNG , if I remember correctly, is stored at very cold temperatures. Our CNG program was similar in that we only had two refueling facilities for the county. One of our local cities used our southern site and they purchased dedicated vehicles. When our refueling facility was wiped out from a lightning strike, they could not refuel eight brand new vehicles for three weeks. What about the cost to maintain these refueling stations, unless you are using a private vendor. on paper , great, in reality, there is no viable alternative that is cost effective.


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