“WHOA, LOOK AT THOSE TEETH!”

THIS IS WHAT WE FOUND IN THIS MILLION DOLLAR HYBRID BUS. PAID FOR BY TAXPAYERS. BUT WE DISCOVERED SITTING IDLE FOR YEARS!

NAT SOT:SWISH

A POSSUM LIVING IN THE ENGINE.

NAT SOT: POSSUM HISSING

THIS ONE WASN’T PLAYING.
¤

“HE’S GOT A NICE LITTLE HOME IN A MILLION DOLLAR-PLUS BUS.”
¤

THIS FORMER BURBANK TRANSIT EMPLOYEE WHO WE’RE NOT IDENTIFYING FIRST NOTICED THE ANIMAL—

NAT SOT: OPENING ENGINE COMPARTMENT

WHEN HE OPENED UP THE ENGINE COMPARTMENT.

“WHAT DID YOU THINK WHEN YOU OPENED IT UP AND SAW THAT POSSUM?
IT SCARED ME. WHEN IT SNARLED AT ME I JUST JUMPED BACK. THAT’S WHEN I TOOK A PICTURE BECAUSE I SAW NOBODY’S GOING TO BELIEVE ME”
¤

THE BUS WAS FUNDED THROUGH A 2007 STATE GRANT REQUESTED BY THE CITY OF BURBANK. IT CALLED FOR A HYBRID–HYDROGEN FUEL CELL BUS FOR ZERO EMISSIONS. ONE OF THE FIRST OF IT’S KIND.
AT A COST TO TAXPAYERS OF MORE THAN 1.3 MILLION DOLLARS.
WITH THE TOTAL PROJECT COSTING ALMOST TWO MILLION DOLLARS.

NAT SOT: CHA CHING
¤

IT WAS TOUTED BY THE US DEPARTMENT OF ENERGY.
THEY SAID THE BUS CAN BE FULLY CHARGED BY PLUGGING IT INTO A 220-VOLT OUTLET.
AND THAT BURBANKBUS PLANNED TO OPERATE THE FUEL CELL VEHICLE ON ALL OF ITS ROUTES
STARTING IN 2010.
BUT OUR SOURCE SAYS IT HASN’T MOVED FROM THIS SPOT FOR YEARS.
¤

“IT’S MORE LIKE A PHANTOM BUS. NO, NOBODY KNOWS NOTHING ABOUT IT.”
¤

STAND UP: “INSIDE THE BUS YOU CAN TELL IT HASN’T BEEN USED FOR QUITE SOME TIME. IN FACT NOW BEING USED FOR STORAGE. THIS SHOPPING CART HERE. ALONG THIS SIDE THESE METAL PANELS AND IN THE BACK JUST SOME BOXES. () YOU CAN TELL THIS HASN’T BEEN ON THE ROAD FOR AWHILE.”

SO LONG—THIS POSSUM HAS MADE IT A STATE FUNDED HOME.
¤
NAT SOT: POSSUM HISSING
¤

“THERE’S A POSSUM WHO HAS MADE HER HOME IN THE ENGINE COMPARTMENT.
YEAH, IT’S BEEN SITTING THERE FOR QUITE AWHILE”

DAVID KRISKE WITH THE CITY OF BURBANK ADMITS THE BUS HASN’T MOVED FOR YEARS—AND EVEN WHEN IT DID–IT DIDN’T GO VERY FAR.
¤

“WAS THIS BUS EVER PUT INTO SERVICE?”
NO, IT WAS NOT.
AND WHY?
WE COULD NOT GET THE BUS TO OPERATE IN A RELIABLE WAY THAT WOULD ALLOW US TO RELY ON IT TO BE ABLE TO PROVIDE TRIPS FOR PAYING CUSTOMERS.”

SO AFTER MORE THAN A MILLION DOLLARS IN STATE FUNDING THIS GREEN ENERGY BUS—WAS A BUST.
¤

“WAS THIS A WASTE OF TAXPAYER MONEY?”
¤

“I THINK FROM THE CITY’S STANDPOINT AND ITS CONTRIBUTION, I THINK IT WAS A REASONABLE USE OF MONEY TO TRY AND MOVE THESE EFFORTS FORWARD.
IT DIDN’T WORK!
IT DID NOT WORK”
¤

“IS THIS A WASTE IN YOUR MIND?
I THINK IF THE BUS ISN’T RUNNING, IT’S A WASTE OF MONEY.”

SUSAN SHELLEY WITH THE HOWARD JARVIS TAXPAYERS ASSOCIATION–SAYS A PRIVATE COMPANY WOULDN’T JUST LEAVE A MILLION DOLLAR BUS TO BE A HOME FOR A POSSUM–BUT WHEN IT COMES TO TAXPAYER MONEY…
¤

“THE GOVERNMENT DOESN’T CARE BECAUSE THEY COERCED THE MONEY OUT OF TAXPAYERS. IT’S NOT THEIR MONEY. THEY’RE JUST HAPPY TO WRITE THE CHECK AND THEN THEY’RE DONE. THEY CAN SAY LOOK WE FUNDED THIS BUT IT’S USELESS. IT’S A WASTE.”

THE CALIFORNIA AIR RESOURCES BOARD CLAIMS IT WAS MONEY WELL SPENT. THEY SAY KNOWING THE TECHNOLOGY DIDN’T WORK HELPED THEM DEVELOP OTHER FUEL EFFICIENT METHODS. AND THE CITY OF BURBANK IS LOOKING INTO WHAT TO DO WITH THE US. PROBABLY SCRAPING IT. BUT THEY SAY THE POSSUM WILL BE RELOCATED AND NOT HARMED.

Comments (5)
  1. Richard Conner says:

    So, what are those “other fuel efficient methods?”

    1. Rick Goddard says:

      Diesels….

  2. Sharon Branigan says:

    Evidence of “other fuel efficient methods” please… and no pictures of pedestrians… that’s just cheating…

  3. This was not the only instance where a new technology bus, specifically an electric bus, was tried out and found not to perform as desired due to short battery life and then parked at the back of the lot or garage and forgotten about.

  4. Joseph Gonzalez says:

    Anybody hear of the humane society. Have them get out there smoke ’em out and transfer him to the wilderness. Then get this bus running and moving. Whatever the cost it will be cheaper than doing nothing. This is not rocket science. Joseph Gonzalez 626-551-9841

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