- The Solid Waste Association of North America (SWANA) and Natural Gas Vehicles for America (NGVA) announced they will partner to release a best-practices safety document for fleets running on natural gas.
- The document will aim to keep fleet owners and operators safe while filling and maintaining refuse trucks that use these alternative natural fuels, such as CNG.
- The two organizations have worked together before on "federal advocacy issues relating to the tax treatment of natural gas-fueled vehicles," according to a press statement.
While the use of compressed natural gas has been embraced for its economic and environmental benefits, the trend has posed some safety hazards.
At this week's WasteExpo in Las Vegas, Rumpke Corporate Safety Supervisor Randy Ellert presented on increased fire risks of CNG over gasoline or diesel options. He cited scenarios where this flammability has caused explosions in refuse trucks. The widely viewed instance in New Jersey when a truck's CNG gas tank exploded and "rocketed" a hole into a nearby home happened earlier this year.
While these incidents are rare, it's important for drivers and fleet operators to understand the best ways to prevent such explosions and keep drivers safe.
"The refuse segment continues to be a strong growth driver in America's fleet of natural gas vehicles. Communities are demanding cleaner, quieter, more cost-effective options for the refuse vehicles running through their neighborhoods and natural gas delivers the best option," said NGVA President Matthew Godlewski. "Our goal in partnering on this new document is to bring further awareness to best practices and demonstrate that safety continues to be the industry’s top priority."