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OCTOBER 2013

Training Day: Marketers


learn how to make the sale
Q&A: Former industry
leader with autogas ties
heads forklift association
Snapshot: Pennsylvanias
Independence Propane
THE PROPANE INDUSTRYS PREMIER INFORMATION SOURCE | www.LPGASmagazine.com
Piloting
progress
Propane brings
spark-ignited engine
back to Kentucky
25 years after
fatal crash
Who is Quality Steel
Corporation?
Others talk about it...
weve made QUALITY our
name for over 50 years!
Quality Steel was founded in 1957 with
a single purpose in mind...build a better
propane tank. We are a family and
employee owned business that
specializes in taking care of our
customers needs in order to make their
propane tank purchases easier. Our
tanks are produced in Cleveland, MS,
and we are extremely proud that they
are 100% USA made. What other
companies offer as options we make
standard equipment, because we
believe your customers should get the
best tanks offered.
Please Contact Us Today
800-345-2495 (toll free)
662-843-4048 (fax)
qsc@propanetank.com (email)
www.propanetank.com (web)
What Makes QSC Worth More?
The Difference
is Clear
100% USA Made - we are reinvesting
in the United States.
Warranty - our 5 year warranty on AG
product is the best in the industry.
Delivery - our lead times are
consistently better than other
companies. We invest in inventory so
you dont have to wait.
Customer Service - we do what we
say, when we say it.
Technology - we continually reinvest
capital in order to continue improving.
Our goal is simple... provide you and
your customers the best tanks
available.
Rego Valves - we make them
standard in our tanks. No need to ask,
no need to worry.
Troy Prewitt
Vice President, Corporate Development
913-661-1817
TroyPrewitt@ferrellgas.com
Travis Fisher
Director, Corporate Development
913-661-1805
TravisFisher@ferrellgas.com
Nancy Coop
Business Development Executive
510-418-7839
NancyCoop@ferrellgas.com
Have you been waiting
for the right time to sell
your propane company?
The right time is now.
Take the rst step. Please contact us today or visit
www.ferrellgas.com/Our-Company/Acquisitions
The propane industrys premier information source
www.LPGasmagazine.com October 2013 LPGas
|
3
OCTOBER 2013
VOLUME 73
|
NUMBER 10
On the cover | Photo courtesy of Istockphoto.com/billnoll
6
|
OPENING DELIVERY
|
Two
manufacturers maneuver into
opportunistic positions.
8
|
VITAL SIGNS
|
NPGA relocates
Southeast show from Atlanta to
Nashville for 2016.
43
|
SAFETY FIRST
|
Te cost of
looking the other way
44
|
LEGAL BRIEF
|
A fatal house
fre raises questions.
45
|
BUSINESS MATTERS
|

Conquering IT challenges
PILOTING PROGRESS
Propane brings spark-
ignited school bus engine
back to Kentucky 25 years
afer fatal crash.
TRAINING DAY
Eager minds want to know
what it takes to launch
propane companies into
autogas.
SHOULDERING
THE LOAD
Former industry leader
with strong autogas ties
heads North American
forklif association.
24
|

32
|

37
|

Features
Departments
24
32
37
We offer the following services and products:
Refurbished ASME tanks
Used ASME tanks as is
Well refurbish your ASME tank
FREE storage yards
Transportation for ASME tanks
Buy scrap in whole load lots
Crist Propane Services, LLC
13344 E Hwy 60, Irvington, KY 40146
www.cristpropaneservices.com
Don Fulton
MI, IN, OH, IL, WI, NC
989-745-8892
donfulton@gmail.com
Joe Crist
All other states
270-668-3448
cpsinc@bbtel.com
Charlie Russ
KY, TN, MS, AL, GA, SC
270-668-5269
cruss.cpsinc@bbtel.com
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Family owned and
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BE SMART & SAVE!
Member of
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4
|
LPGas October 2013 www.LPGasmagazine.com
46
|
MARKETING MIX
|
Propane use on rise in local
beer, wine and spirits industry.
47-48
|
LETS TALK
|
Guest columnists talk propane
autogas sales and remote tank monitoring systems.
49
|
PRODUCT SHOWCASE
|
New regulators, pumps
and compressors hit the market.
60
|
SNAPSHOT
|
Young Pennsylvanian takes his
propane experiences and forms his own company.
60
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Editorial Advisory Board
Patrick Hyland
Director of Industry
Programs, Propane
Education & Research
Council, Cleveland, OH
Dale Delay
President,
Cost Management
Solutions,
Livingston, TX
Daryl McClendon
Principal & Owner,
DFM Enterprises,
Willowbrook, IL
Tom Jaenicke
Owner, ATomiK
Creative Solutions,
Charlevoix, MI
Ed Varney
Eastern U.S. Sales
Manager, Emerson
Process Management,
Houston, TX
Joseph Rose
President/CEO,
Propane Gas
Association of New
England, Epsom, NH
Larry Osgood
President,
Consulting
Solutions LLC,
Monument, CO
W
E MAKE
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INTERS
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tOver 60,000 key combinations
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Mike Walters
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& Training, Superior
Energy Systems,
Columbia Station, OH
T
he tanks and cylinders that con-
tain our valuable product under
pressure became a focus for us
last month.
We talked to a composite cylinder
company thats making a push in the
United States. Hexagon Ragasco, with
Norwegian roots and U.S. operations
now in Lincoln, Neb., has launched a
North American brand called Viking
Cylinders.
The company has manufactured
composite cylinders since the late
1990s and has sold about 8 million
units around the world, with much of
its success coming in the Scandinavian
countries. But it hasnt done much in
the United States until now.
We believe, and the market tells us,
that the consumer wants this product,
says Tarun Kundhi, who works in busi-
ness development for Hexagon Ragasco
North America. We need to take it
straight to the consumer, and in order
to take it to the consumer we needed a
brand.
The company first plans to demon-
strate product demand for the 11-, 17
and 31-pound cylinders available to the
U.S. market (a 22-pounder is coming
soon). To this point, it has been focused
on the marine, RV and camping, and
other outdoor markets, but it hopes to
grow beyond those areas.
And its already making inroads.
Hawaii Gas propane cylinder exchange
program, called PropaneXchange,
uses Viking composites, and Florida
propane retailer Propane USA makes
the composite cylinder available to its
customers. The product is also available
through other retail outlets, such as
marine shops, and outdoor propane-
powered equipment manufacturer Lehr
Inc. Viking Cylinders will be available
in more than 200 (non-propane) retail-
ers by January 2014, the company says.
Hexagon Ragasco would like to
work with propane retailers and is
fast-tracking a tool that would allow
cylinder owners to find refill locations
in their area.
While cost may be a barrier for some
in adopting the composite cylinder
the product is about three times the cost
of a steel cylinder, retailing for more
than $100 Hexagon Ragasco says its
products have notable features, being
light, transparent and noncorrosive.
As the company makes its move in
the United States, its finding a need to
educate the propane industry on the
safety aspects of its cylinders. A May
recall of more than 55,000 composite
cylinders from The Lite Cylinder Co.
of Franklin, Tenn., has clouded the
competitive landscape for composite
cylinders, according to Kundhi.
There are cylinders on the market
by multiple manufacturers, and those
are good, safe cylinders, he says.
Kundhi says retailers and refillers
should educate themselves about the
composite cylinders on the market
Amtrol and Composite Scandinavia
also manufacture composite cylinders
not only to protect consumers during
a recall but also to maintain reliable
customer service and keep approved
cylinders full at customer requests.
Look for U.S. Department of
Transportation (DOT) markings and
company labels. Hexagon Ragascos
special permit number and company
name are located at the top of the cyl-
inder and on the boss (where the valve
attaches). The company name and web
address are also found on the case. All
new cylinders will show the Viking
Cylinders logo and web address (www.
vikingcylinders.com).
DOT has offered details about The
Lite Cylinder recall, including how to
identify and properly dispose of affect-
ed cylinders. Visit www.phmsa.dot.gov.
Open house
Discussions turned to considerably
larger vessels when we visited Highland
Tanks new manufacturing facility in
Manheim, Pa.
Like Hexagon Ragasco, the compa-
ny is discovering opportunities in the
U.S. propane market. It manufactures
propane tanks ranging in size from
3,900 gallons to 60,000 gallons for com-
mercial and industrial uses, and it also
has an interest in autogas applications.
You can read our report on page 10,
as well as news from other tank manu-
facturers, in Vital Signs. LPG
6
|
LPGas October 2013 www.LPGasmagazine.com
brichesson@northcoastmedia.net
EDITOR IN CHIEF
|
BRIAN RICHESSON
Talking tanks
Two manufacturers maneuver into opportunistic positions
This composite cylinder manufacturers
information is shown under the valve.
Dont let them get eaten by wasted trips.
2013 Schmitt Industries, Inc. All rights reserved. XACT TANK MONITORING SYSTEMS and SCHMITT INDUSTRIES are trademarks of Schmitt Industries, Inc.
A PRODUCT LI NE OF
www.schmitt-ind.com
Xact is the only Remote Tank Monitoring System with 100%
accuracy to +/- 1% and the reliability to deliver 100% confidence
in your inventory levels. Quit burning up your
profits on expenses making wasted trips.
Make more, get more. Get Xact.
Email us at xact-sales@schmitt-ind.com
or call +1 503.227.7908.
www.xact-data.com
Xacts remote tank monitoring system, the industrys most accurate, makes
every delivery count. Xact can cut your distribution trips in half, reduce your
costs and increase your fuel delivery per stop. Your pro ts will thrive.
Protect Your Prots
[
NEWS BRI EFS
]
I NDUSTRY NEWS & NUMBERS
T
he National Propane Gas Association
(NPGA) is planning to move its South-
eastern Convention & International
Propane Expo from Atlanta to Nash-
ville, Tenn., in 2016. Atlanta would continue
to host the event in 2014 and 2015.
Contracts were not yet signed at press
time, but the association was moving forward
with the intent to complete the deal, accord-
ing to details from an NPGA webinar held on
the move.
The decision is a result of NPGAs ef-
forts to review and find ways to improve the
industrys biggest show, which has suffered
from attendance declines in recent years.
The task assigned was to create increased
attendance, excitement and opportunities
for the show, and I think this does that,
says Milt Swenson, chairman of NPGAs
Conventions Committee, of Arrow Tank &
Engineering Co., who led two September we-
binars to explain the decision.
The city of Nashville opened a $623 mil-
lion convention center this year that would
provide, with 1.2 million square feet, a more
intimate venue for the show. Atlantas Geor-
gia World Congress Center, which opened in
1976, is the fourth-largest convention center
Mower brands link to
conversion program
Excel Industries Hustler
Turf Equipment and
BigDog Mowers brands
will participate in
Metro Lawn Propane
Conversions, an
AmeriGas program that
offers Environmental
Protection Agency- and
California Air Resources
Board-certified conver-
sion kits for Kawasaki
engines.
Select dealers who
have been trained as part
of Metro Lawn Propane
Conversions will perform
the conversions.
Ferrellgas chairman
pitches propane mowers
Jim Ferrell, the chairman
of Ferrellgas Partners
LP, and his wife, Zibbie,
convinced their land-
scape provider, Jeffreys,
to convert its WH48A
John Deere walk-behind
lawn mower to run on
propane.
The Ferrells, who live
in Kansas City, Kan.,
informed Jeffreys Jeff
Walkwitz about the
number of lawn and
landscape profession-
als who are switching to
propane. Walkwitz took
action once he realized
propanes possibilities.
Texas landscaper cuts
fuel costs with propane
Benchmark Landscapes,
a commercial landscape
maintenance and design
company serving central
Texas, says it has cut fuel
costs by 58 percent oper-
ating 46 lawn mowers on
Continued on page 10
On the move to Music City: NPGA plans
Southeast show relocation to Nashville
[
PROPANE MASTER LI MI TED PARTNERSHI P COMPARI SON
]
Fiscal Recent Total Units
Year Quarter Price Current Current Est. Tax Debt/ Outstanding
Company End End (9/13/13) Distribution Yield Deferral Capital (millions)
AmeriGas (APU) Sept. June $43.17 $3.36 7.8% 75% 61% 92.8
Ferrellgas (FGP) July April 22.47 2.00 8.9 90 103 79.1
NGL Energy Partners (NGL) March June 31.47 1.98 6.3 80 48 62.3
Suburban Propane (SPH) Sept. June 45.98 3.50 7.6 80 53 60.2
Average: 7.6% 66%
[
LAST TWELVE MONTHS
]
Gross Gross Gross Proft Gross Proft Retail Gallons Sold Percent Gross Proft
Company Revenue Proft Margin (Per employee) (millions) Change (Per gallon)
AmeriGas $2,864 $1,309 46% $151,193 1,243 29% $0.97
Ferrellgas 1,605 649 40 186,966 638 3 0.72
NGL Energy Partners 1,155 175 15 88,650 149 61 0.16
Suburban Propane 1,341 742 55 178,960 527 105 1.41
Average: 39% $151,442 49% $0.82
Source: FactSet, partnership reports and Wells Fargo Securities LLC
- 0ollot hutes |n m|ll|ons, excet lot et-un|t Joto.
- kevenue onJ toss toht Joto ote coseJ on totol toone ollons solJ.
- lmloyee Joto |s coseJ on most tecently comleteJ hscol yeot.
- NCls tevenue onJ toss toht Joto |ncluJe the sole ol J|st|llotes onJ
othet notutol os l|qu|Js.
5hoton lu| - onolyst, wells loto 5ecut|t|es llC
8
|
LPGas October 2013 www.LPGasmagazine.com
A view from above in Atlanta
[
NEWS BRI EFS
]
www.LPGasmagazine.com October 2013 LPGas
|
9
propane autogas.
The company first
switched to propane
five years ago. In 2012,
Benchmark says, it paid
an average of $1.45 per
gallon for propane versus
$3.45 for gasoline, sav-
ing more than $72,000
in the course of the year.
The landscaping fleet
uses 36,000 gallons of
propane annually, mow-
ing for 38,640 hours over
18,480 acres. Benchmark
fuels the fleet with its
own on-site station.
UGI Corp. acquires LP gas
business from BP
AmeriGas parent compa-
ny, UGI Corp., completed
its acquisition of BPs
liquefied petroleum gas
(LP gas) distribution busi-
ness in Poland through
subsidiary company
Flaga GmbH. Terms of
the transaction were not
disclosed.
According to a press
release, BPs Polish LPG
business distributed
more than 150 million
gallons of LP gas in
2012 while serving the
residential, commercial,
propane autogas and
wholesale segments. UGI
says it distributed more
than 600 million gallons
of LP gas throughout
Europe last year.
Cooperatives acquire
Access Energy Propane
Agriland FS Inc. and West
Central FS Inc., a pair
of farmer cooperatives,
collectively reached an
agreement to acquire the
Continued on page 10
Deviation Deviation
From Last 12 From
State August Norm Months Norm
Alabama 0 0 2660 -179
Alaska 216 -83 10985 -209
Arizona 0 0 1935 -225
Arkansas 4 2 3508 2
California 0 -9 2264 -370
Colorado 7 -52 7115 -293
Connecticut 33 19 5720 -349
Delaware 0 -1 4418 -322
Dist. of Columbia 0 -7 3776 -279
Florida 0 0 533 -104
Georgia 3 3 2818 -65
Hawaii 0 0 0 0
Idaho 0 -50 6567 -341
Illinois 22 1 6309 -45
Indiana 25 7 5845 -49
Iowa 36 7 7252 193
Kansas 5 -3 5253 134
Kentucky 2 -2 4575 -41
Louisiana 0 0 1724 -60
Maine 38 -20 7624 -388
Maryland 0 -2 4680 -169
Massachusetts 2 -17 5995 -412
Michigan 19 -17 6719 -230
Minnesota 23 -35 8864 108
Mississippi 0 0 2514 -49
Missouri 13 3 5285 67
Montana 4 -97 7530 -780
Nebraska 14 -7 6630 106
Nevada 0 -9 3298 -505
New Hampshire 12 -37 7062 -526
New Jersey 0 -5 5210 -234
New Mexico 0 -11 4372 -464
New York 0 -18 5643 -473
North Carolina 8 7 3552 27
North Dakota 66 -6 9787 339
Ohio 30 12 5808 -164
Oklahoma 0 -2 3786 36
Oregon 5 -56 5077 -73
Pennsylvania 37 19 5779 -130
Rhode Island 39 26 5741 -148
South Carolina 5 5 2813 18
South Dakota 34 -7 7838 -10
Tennessee 6 5 4082 82
Texas 0 0 1790 -207
Utah 0 -22 6234 -379
Vermont 95 27 7697 -413
Virginia 0 -2 4433 -46
Washington 6 -67 5287 -226
West Virginia 9 -3 5284 -12
Wisconsin 62 13 7912 121
Wyoming 1 -77 7740 -564
United States 10 -5 4348 -176
[
BY LEO MICHAEL
]
AUGUST
[
HEATI NG DEGREE DAYS BY STATE
]
Data courtesy of the Climate Prediction Center/National Weather Service
PERCENT
RETURN
NOT
MEANINGFUL
LOWER THAN
AVERAGE
HEATING
DEGREE DAYS
HIGHER THAN
AVERAGE
HEATING
DEGREE DAYS
Continued from page 8 Continued from page 9
[
NEWS BRI EFS
]
Continued on page 12
10
|
LPGas October 2013 www.LPGasmagazine.com
Highland Tank increases manufacturing capabilities
Highland Tank has opened a new manufacturing facility at its location in
Manheim, Pa., about 30 miles southeast of Harrisburg.
The third-generation family company builds propane tanks, among
other petroleum and chemical storage products, ranging in size from
3,900 gallons to 60,000 gallons for commercial and industrial customers.
It also manufactures
custom tanks.
The modernized
facility, measuring
about 45,000 square
feet, gives the com-
pany more manu-
facturing space and
lifting capacity on the
property as it looks to
strengthen its pres-
ence in the propane
industry, including
autogas. The facility
also houses a blasting
and painting room.
Highland Tank
traces its roots back
to 1946 when it constructed heating oil tanks, but over the years it has
branched into a number of industries. Manheim is one of Highland Tanks
six manufacturing facilities, with headquarters in Stoystown, Pa. The com-
pany employs about 300 people.
A 30,000-gallon tank in the works at the new plant
propane business of Access Energy
Cooperative.
That division, called Access Energy
Propane, will be divided between
Agriland FS and West Central FS. Iowa-
based Agriland FS will acquire Access
Energy Propanes Iowa customers, while
Illinois-based West Central FS acquires
the divisions Illinois customers.
Gestion Jerico enters propane storage
tank market with acquisition
Gestion Jerico Inc., a commercial
tank and home heating company,
acquired 90 percent of Pro-Par Group,
a Canadian manufacturer of storage
tanks, dispensers and transport units
for the propane industry.
Pro-Pars management will continue
to own the remaining 10 percent of
the company. According to a press
release, Pro-Par has operations in
Quebec and Ontario. The company
employs 80 people.
NGL Energy Partners acquires three
water-disposal facilities in Texas
NGL Energy Partners LP acquired the
water disposal business of Coastal
Plains Disposal #1 LLC, complement-
ing its existing footprint in the Eagle
Ford shale play in Texas. According to
a press release, NGLs footprint in the
region now includes 240,000 barrels
per day of water-disposal capacity.
The acquisition expands NGL
Energy subsidiary High Sierra Water-
Eagle Ford LLCs water gathering and
treatment infrastructure portfolio by
three water-disposal facilities. The
in the United States, measuring 3.9
million total square feet.
Nashville offers 10 hotels and
1,480 rooms similar to Atlantas
peak-room availability within five
blocks of the convention center. A
550-room Omni is adjacent to the
convention center and would serve
as the events host hotel.
NPGA says the city could close a
street running between the conven-
tion center and the Omni for out-
door events associated with the show.
A task force set up to review the
show offered recommendations to
NPGAs Executive Committee fo-
cusing on the venue, show dates and
co-locating at some point with the
Hearth, Patio and Barbecue Expo.
Swenson says three propane
industry groups were consulted on
relocating the show the Southeast-
ern Advisory Committee (composed
of state presidents, state directors
and state association executives of
seven southeastern states); NPGAs
Exhibitor Advisory Committee; and
its Conventions Committee.
Members of the three groups vis-
ited Nashville and came away with
a unanimous decision to hold the
show there, Swenson says.
The Executive Committee gave
this site selection committee the
ability to make the decision to move,
if the site visit went well and all of
the parameters would be in place as
far as the venue, hotel availability,
etcetera, Swenson says.
No other cities outside Atlanta
were seriously considered because
general consensus for Nashville
existed within the Southeastern
Advisory Committee and timing to
secure dates in Nashville became a
factor, Swenson says.
The expo drew 2,785 total attend-
ees (1,303 attendees and 1,266 ex-
hibitors) to this years show, breaking
a three-year decline in the number
of attendees walking the trade show
floor. Brian Richesson
Cavagna North America Inc. 50 Napoleon Court, Somerset NJ 08873 Phone 732-469-2100 Fax 732 469 3344
Cavagna West 1393 Dodson Way-A Riverside, CA 92507 Phone 732-469-2100 Fax 732 469 3344 Info@cavagna.com
For decades we have been manufacturing quality products for the gas industry.
The development of the Alternative Fuel Systems range is a natural evolution.
Our CNG and Autogas Systems offer the highest technology and meet the most stringent
safety requirements.
Our innovative features bring a new wave in the use of Propane appliances, such as trimmers,
lawn mowers, pressure washers and many more.
www.cavagnagroup.com
Propane beats petrol all the way
Stop polluting the environment, empower your engines with Propane.
acquisition also includes an option to
acquire a fourth water-disposal facil-
ity currently under development. The
fourth is expected to be operational
before the end of this year.
In addition, the acquisition includes
options to acquire two other permit-
ted locations.
Pump Solutions Group acquires
Italian pump manufacturer
Pump Solutions Group (PSG) signed
an agreement to acquire Italian-based
Finder Group, which manufactures
gas and oil pumps and systems.
According to a press release, PSGs
acquisition is subject to regulatory
approvals and is expected to close
early in the fourth quarter. Terms of
the transaction were not disclosed.
Finder Group operates in Merate
and Querceta, Italy, and Vennissieux,
France. It will operate as a business
unit within PSG, which sought the
acquisition because of Finders cen-
trifugal, piston and twin-screw pump
technologies.
World LP Gas Forum welcomes British
royal family member to ceremony
Princess Anne, the only daughter and
second child of Queen Elizabeth and
Prince Philip, was scheduled to open
the 26th annual World LP Gas Forum
& 2013 AEGPL Congress on Oct. 2 in
London, England. The event was to
take place at the Queen Elizabeth II
Conference Centre.
Quality Steel completes American
Welding & Tank deal
Quality Steel Corp., based in
Cleveland, Miss., completed the acqui-
sition of certain assets of American
Welding & Tank LLC and TW Express
LLC, subsidiaries of Taylor-Wharton
International LLC, the company
announced.
The purchase includes the American
Welding & Tank brand, as well as the
facilities and workforce in Fremont,
Ohio, and West Jordan, Utah.
Prior to the acquisition of American
Welding & Tank, the company had
the ability to fabricate ASME propane
tanks ranging in size from 120 to 1,000
gallons. Today, Quality Steels manu-
facturing capabilities include produc-
tion of propane tanks and anhydrous
ammonia tanks up to a 2,000-gallon
capacity.
Jim Tims is president and CEO of
Quality Steel, and the son of cofound-
er Lowry Tims. Virgil Mullins is COO
and Lynn Hardin vice president of
sales and marketing.
Diane Brandt, inside sales manager,
and Dave Kubacki, director of human
resources and safety, have joined the
Continued from page 10
[
NEWS BRI EFS
]
Tri State Tank
Propane Autogas Bobtail
6.0L HPPI (High Pressure Propane Injection)
Propane Autogas Engine*
Allison 3500 RDS Automatic
630 lb/ft of torque @ 1,900 RPM
309 HP @ 2,500 RPM
Contact Dan Hermansen or Randy Krauth
800-255-0008
sales@tristatetank.com / www.TriStateTank.com
1201 West 31st Street, Kansas City, MO 64108
The Walker Group
A Division of Wabash National

TM
*EPA CARB
certification in process
12
|
LPGas October 2013 www.LPGasmagazine.com
Continued on page 14
company as part of the American Welding & Tank acquisi-
tion. Quality Steel now has about 300 employees, adding
about 200 in the process.
Tank manufacturer Apache enters propane market
Apache Stainless Equipment Corp. says it has entered the
propane market by providing a 30,000-gallon tank for its
partner, LPG & NH3 Supply Inc., to install at a residential
and commercial supply company.
LPG & NH3 Supply is a design, build and service provider
to the propane bulk industry and serves the midwestern
United States. The company, based in Buffalo, Minn., is sup-
porting Apaches growth and deadlines for tank delivery.
The tank supplied by Apache was constructed from car-
bon steel with a 3/4-inch thick shell, 1/2-inch thick heads
and a weight of about 49,000 pounds.
The company serves a variety of industries, with its
products most commonly found in food, pharmaceutical,
water treatment, chemical, biofuel, petroleum, health and
beauty, pulp and paper, and beverage applications.
Dairy farm displaces diesel with dual-fuel engine
A California dairy farm saved about $4,000 a month in fuel
costs in May and June with two propane-diesel retrofit
systems installed on its groundwater irrigation pump
engines, the Propane Education & Research Council (PERC)
reports.
Steve Maddox, third generation dairyman and man-
aging partner of Maddox Dairy, installed the systems in
2012 to reduce fuel costs and diesel exhaust emissions as
part of the dairys sustainability initiatives. The converted
engines run on 50 percent propane and 50 percent diesel,
and have enabled Maddox Dairy to cut its diesel consump-
tion in half and its fuel costs by 25 percent, according to a
press release outlining the results.
California Clean Air Technologies developed the system,
which meets California Air Resources Board approval.
Tecogen to test propane-fueled water heating system
Through a partnership with PERC, Tecogen will demon-
strate the Ilios, a new high-efficiency propane-fueled com-
mercial water heating system, at four sites in the United
States.
The project will show performance, gather operating
data and provide economic payback information for the
propane-fueled Ilios hot water heaters. Potential sites for
these large 500,000-Btu-per-hour systems include hotels,
hospitals, nursing homes, apartment buildings, athletic
facilities, swimming pools as well as agriculture and aqua-
culture projects.
The Ilios units will provide a new alternative for propane
Continued from page 12
[
NEWS BRI EFS
]
14
|
LPGas October 2013 www.LPGasmagazine.com
Continued on page 16
When you partner with family-owned and operated ThompsonGas,
you wont be just another acquisition where your customers
and employees are the victims of the transaction. We successfully
acquire businesses like yours because we understand your most
valuable assets are not reflected in your financial statements
your customers, employees and their families, and the respect you
have in your community.
Our well-financed acquisition model offers flexible options, like
continued operational control of your company (if desired)
and direct contact with President/CEO Randy Thompson, that
large, national companies wont even consider. Well get you the
capital you need to grow, without sacrificing your confidentiality,
reputation or values in the process.
When you join our team you experience the ThompsonGas difference:
Lower cost of capital to grow the business
Substantial upside as you continue growing your company
Focused due diligence and a quick close
A long-time partnership with ThompsonGas!
JOHN SIMCOX
Vice President of Business Development
717-991-0506
JSimcox@ThompsonGas.com
DANIEL CARRIGAN
Business Development Consultant
913-638-8677
DCarrigan@ThompsonGas.com
THE TRUSTED NAME IN PROPANE
www.ThompsonGas.com/Acquisitions
James Driver
ThompsonGas Partner
Value Creation After Partnering with ThompsonGas
THINKING OF SELLING YOUR COMPANY,
BUT DONT WANT TO SELL YOURSELF SHORT?
to compete more effectively in commercial and industrial
water heating markets, the Massachusetts company says.
PERC approved $157,500 for the project at its July meeting.
CHS expands propane capabilities in North Dakota
CHS Inc. will add propane storage and rail services at the
Central Plains Ag Services location in Hannaford, N.D., the
latest in a series of actions to secure a supply for custom-
ers affected by the upcoming Cochin pipeline reversal
project, the company announced.
This agreement is part of an $18 million investment by
CHS in response to the pipeline reversal project. CHS will
access and distribute propane through the new terminal
to serve existing customers as well as new customers in
eastern North Dakota and northwestern Minnesota.
Central Plains Ag Services, jointly owned by CHS and
West Central Ag Services in Ulen, Minn., will operate and
maintain the CHS propane terminal.
Penn State students to evaluate grill tank gauges
Sophomore engineering students at Penn State University
have set out to evaluate commercially available products
used to measure the amount of propane remaining in a
barbecue grill cylinder.
James Hendrickson, instructor of engineering at Penn
States Beaver Campus in Monaca, Pa., assigned the semes-
ter project, part of the requirements for the students
engineering thermodynamics course.
Students are asking manufacturers to submit samples
for the study. The Propane GasGenie, distributed by
Creative Electronic Products, is one such product involved
in the study. The GasGenie, through electronics and tem-
perature sensors, is designed to detect low propane levels
in a cylinder with enough time remaining for the user to
finish grilling.
Students have identified basic product types for use in
the study and are soliciting manufacturers for samples.
Students also have been tasked with identifying and con-
tacting a local propane supplier to help with the testing
program.
We are excited about this project here at Penn State as
this appears to be a market segment with a low level of
awareness and/or technical understanding by consumers,
Hendrickson wrote in an email.
The final report is due in December.
CB&I to build propane terminal for Sunoco
Sunoco Partners Marketing & Terminals LP awarded a $270
million contract to CB&I for the construction of a turnkey
propane terminal and de-ethanizer facility in Marcus
Hook, Pa., CB&I announced.
CB&I, a company focused on energy infrastructure, says
Continued from page 14
[
NEWS BRI EFS
]
16
|
LPGas October 2013 www.LPGasmagazine.com
IN FULL COMPLIANCE WITH ALL
APPLICABLE NFPA STANDARDS
UL and CSA Listed so units can
be placed on fuel islands with
other fuel dispensers
Package Systems for Quick
Infrastructure Installation
Wide Range of Dispensing
Products to Meet Fleet-Specifc
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System is 100% Compatible
With Any Current Fuel
Management System
440-236-6009
Visit our website at:
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The Industrys
Most Advanced,
Autogas Dispensers
www.LPGasmagazine.com October 2013 LPGas
|
17
P k j
Variable frequency drive (VFD) has many
features and benefits...
Easily converts single phase source to three phase service.
Slow start-up feature eliminates flow surges.
Variable motor speed capability maximizes pump performance.
Motor overload protection minimizes potential damage.
Pre-programmed at 60 Hz with 4 second ramp-up speed.
Magnetic starter not requiredminimizes installation costs.
Standard remote switch available.
it is constructing the ethane storage
tank terminal for Sunoco at the site.
Marcus Hook has become a key des-
tination for natural gas liquids coming
from the Marcellus and Utica shale
plays in the region. New infrastructure
will help boost Marcus Hooks capabil-
ity to provide propane and ethane
to local, regional and international
markets.
Enterprise Products Partners
to expand export facility
Enterprise Products Partners L.P. is
planning an additional expansion of its
LP gas export terminal on the Houston
Ship Channel in Texas.
Enterprise says the expansion will
increase its loading capacity by an
additional 1.5 million barrels per
month. Thats the equivalent of three
cargoes per month, according to a
press release.
The expansion will increase total
design capacity to about 9 million
barrels per month, and the project is
expected to be complete in the first
quarter of 2015. Enterprise previously
completed an expansion of its LP gas
export terminal in March.
Southcross completes second
propane pipeline
Dallas-based Southcross Energy
Partners completed a new propane
pipeline connecting its Bonnie View
fractionator in Refugio County, Texas,
to Enterprise Products Partners.
It is Southcross second pipeline
outlet, in addition to its pipeline con-
nection to Dow Chemical, for the
delivery of propane.
Swiss company to build chemical
facility for Enterprise
Foster Wheeler AG, through a sub-
sidiary of its global engineering and
construction group, will build a pro-
pane dehydrogenation (PDH) facility
for a subsidiary of Enterprise Products
Partners in Mont Belvieu, Texas, the
Swiss company announced.
Foster Wheeler says it has been
awarded an engineering, procure-
ment and construction contract by
Enterprise Products Operating LLC for
the PDH unit and associated power,
utilities and infrastructure. The facility
will convert propane to propylene for
use in the petrochemical industry.
Oneok boosts midstream oferings
through acquisition
Oneok Partners L.P. plans to invest
about $440 million in the natural gas
liquids (NGL)-rich area of the Powder
River Basin in Wyoming to purchase a
processing facility and upgrade and
construct gathering and processing-
related infrastructure, NGL gathering
pipelines and well connections, the
company announced.
18
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LPGas October 2013 www.LPGasmagazine.com
CleanFuel USA
Blair Poulsen was named director of
sales. Poulsen has more than 23 years
of experience in the propane industry.
He most recently was regional sales
and marketing director for Heritage
Propane and AmeriGas. He currently
serves as chairman on the Nevada
Board for the Regulation of Liquefied
Petroleum Gas.
Venturo
Steve Overby joined Venturo as a ter-
ritory manager, covering 16 states in
the central United States. Overby spent
the last 16 years with Commercial Body
Corp., most recently serving it as a ter-
ritory manager for truck equipment
and service sales.
Palfinger Liftgates
Ricky Richardson was hired as a
field service technician.
Richardson is responsible
for training OEMs and
distributors on instal-
lations and after-sales
service as well as provid-
ing maintenance and
troubleshooting support
to fleets with in-house
service centers. His ter-
ritory will include New
Mexico, Texas, Oklahoma,
Louisiana, Tennessee,
Kentucky, Mississippi, Georgia, Florida,
North Carolina and South Carolina.
Richardson previously held the posi-
tion of technical fleet sales support/
warranty manager.
National Propane Gas
Association
Kristen White joined the association
as director, convention and meet-
ings. She brings more than 20 years of
experience in logistics and meeting
planning. White previously worked
for Destination Marketing Association
International as the director of meet-
ing operations and the director of
operations for Destinations Showcase.
Navien
Christopher Rizzo joined Navien as
its Southwest trainer. Rizzo previously
worked for Rinnai as a regional service
manager. He also spent some time
with Bosch as a trainer.
[
PEOPLE
]
Quality Steel Corp.
Paul Bobitt died after a lengthy ill-
ness at the age of 72. Bobitt joined
the company in
1986 as its first
salesperson.
He later was
promoted to
sales manager
and contributed
heavily to the
companys suc-
cess in becom-
ing a national supplier of propane
tanks. Subsequently, Bobitt was
promoted to general manager.
LP Gas Insurance Specialists
of America
Harry Lyons, the companys presi-
dent, died on Aug. 4 at the age of
65. He was the former president of
Greens Fuel Co. of Georgia. Lyons
had more than 40 years of com-
bined experience in the propane
and insurance industries. He was an
active member in the national and
state propane associations. Lyons
was a regular attendee of the LP Gas
golf outing.
Bobitt
Harry Lyons, left, was a regular
attendee of the LP Gas golf outing.
The new
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A sampling of notable tweets and
posts from LP Gas social media
pages.
twitter.com/lpgas_mag
www.facebook.com/lpgasmagazine
Tank monitoring plays a part
in rightsizing retailer operations
to match a customers #propane
demand.


Attention, operators of commer-
cial motor vehicles: Are your brake
systems in good shape? Inspectors
out this week.

A Texas cab company reports
achieving five-figure annual fuel sav-
ings using #propane autogas for five
vehicles.

ProGas is using three upcoming
southwestern PA events as platforms
to promote propane as a transporta-
tion fuel.
Enterprise Products Partners L.P.
added a seventh NGL fractionator
at its complex in Mont Belvieu,
Texas.
Four Ray Murray employ-
ees earned the National Fire
Institutes Certified Master Hearth
Professional status.
Alliance Energy Services signed
an agreement to acquire a #pro-
pane terminal from Kinder Morgan
for about $5 million.
CHS Inc. makes another move
in response to the Cochin pipeline
reversal project.
Public transportation fleets hon-
ored at #buscon13 for their use of
propane autogas.
The Fuel Web updated its #pro-
pane delivery management system
with a few enhancements for 2013.
And for the latest news and updates
from the propane industry, visit www.
lpgasmagazine.com.
20
|
LPGas October 2013 www.LPGasmagazine.com
Autogas Dispensing
featuring Parafour Dispensers, Autogas Pumps, Gasguard
Nozzles, and Eco-Air - Reliable Pneumatic Actuation System
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(800) 334-7816
Kansas City MO
(800) 821-5062
Little Rock AR
(800) 643-8222
Dallas TX
(800) 821-1829
St. Louis MO
(800) 423-4685
Richmond VA
(800) 368-4013
Fayetteville NC
(800) 447-1625
Orlando FL
(800) 821-0631
Indianapolis IN
(800) 241-1971
Atlanta GA
(800) 241-4155
SINCE 1937
www.youtube.com/GasEquipmentTV
THE SOCIAL SCENE
Visit www.arieet.com
Utility eet managers are asked to do a lot. Just imagine how
much you could get done if you had a little help. ARIs Utility
FleetTeam has specialized experience working with utility
companies from every sector electric, gas, water, propane,
telecom and utility contractors to nd efciencies and
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ownership. Someday, science may discover a way to
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Call 1.800.477.4715 to see if you qualify
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SPECIALIZING IN THE COMPLEX NEEDS OF UTILITY FLEETS.
Imagine more
of you to go around.

Prins bi-fuel system part of
promotional events: ProGas
planned to use three southwestern
Pennsylvania events as platforms to
promote propane as a transporta-
tion fuel. ProGas planned to have
propane autogas vans on display
at the 12th annual Ohio Watershed
Celebration in Pittsburgh; at the
Pennsylvania Independent Oil and
Gas Association Alternative Fuel
Car Cruise in Cranberry Township,
Pa.; and at Odyssey Day, an alterna-
tive fuel technology celebration, in
Oakdale, Pa. According to a press
release, ProGas President Ronald
Schramm planned to present the
2012 Ford E-350 van converted to a
Prins bi-fuel propane system.

Superior dispenser awarded
CSA certification: Superior Energy
Systems received certification for its
propane autogas dispensers from the
CSA Group. The dispenser will bear
the CSA Groups mark of compliance
with indicators for U.S. and Canadian
use. According to a press release, the
dispenser is also compatible with
third-party fuel management sys-
tems, including American National
Standards Institute, Underwriters
Laboratories and all National Fire
Protection Association requirements
for power-operated dispensing devic-
es for autogas.

Texas cab company touts auto-
gas savings: Taxi Cab Co. of Tyler,
a cab and transportation company
located in Tyler, Texas, is running
five of its fleet vehicles on pro-
pane autogas, according to a press
release. The vehicles running on
autogas are two taxis, two vans and
a shuttle bus. Taxi Cab Co. of Tyler
switched to autogas two years ago
and says it saved $10,578 running
on autogas in 2012 rather than on
gasoline.
FOCUS ON
SPONSORED BY
To learn more about the S2G LPG Commercial Chassis, visit
freightlinerchassis.com or call Freightliner Custom Chassis
at (800) 545-8831. For ordering details, contact your local
dealer. See it in action on YouTubesearch S2G Truck.
22
|
LPGas October 2013 www.LPGasmagazine.com
ACME Alternate Fuel Systems
hosted 14 students this summer
from across the United States
during its 57th annual ACME
School in Mankato, Minn.
ACME School focuses on pro-
pane autogas, teaching students
about whats available for appli-
cations and how to diagnose and
fix problems.
Rick Nordstrom, an Automotive
Service Excellence-certified
technician, taught the class. Dave
Rothfork, another certified tech-
nician, demonstrated propane
operating systems.
[
NEWS BRI EFS
]
Source: Clean Cities Alternative
Fuel Price Report, national
averages, July 2013
The average price of propane, calculated
by Clean Cities from about 400 public and
private refueling stations, did not change
from the April report. Gasoline prices
went up 6 cents; diesel prices fell 8 cents.
Diesel $3.91
Gasoline $3.65
Propane $2.73
I
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/
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N
A sleeping giant
Highland Tank showcased
a tank model for propane
autogas applications during an
open house at its new plant in
Manheim, Pa. The company calls
the autogas market a sleeping
giant of alternative fuel and
hopes to capitalize on increased
opportunities in this segment.
Students learn ins,
outs of autogas
M
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B
IL
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D
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IV
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www.LPGasmagazine.com October 2013 LPGas
|
23
NOV. 14-15 PERC/NPGA State
Leadership Benchmarking Summit
at the Renaissance Washington, DC
Dupont Circle Hotel in Washington,
D.C. For details, contact Kristen Healey
at kristen.healey@propane.com or
202-452-8975.
DEC. 10-11 PERC Meeting in Amelia
Island, Fla. For details, contact Anna
Lombardo at 202-452-8975 or anna.
lombardo@propane.com.
JAN. 17-18, 2014 Benchmarking
Council at the Embassy Suites Tampa
USF in Tampa, Fla. For details, contact
Baron Glassgow at bglassgow@npga.
org or 866-881-6309.
JAN. 21-23 International Air-Condi-
tioning, Heating, Refrigerating (AHR)
Expo at the Javits Convention Center
in New York. Visit www.ahrexpo.com.
FEB. 2-4 NPGA Winter Board of Di-
rectors Meeting at the Hyatt Regency
in Clearwater Beach, Fla. For details,
contact Peter Ferrell at pferrell@npga.
org or 202-355-1338.
FEB. 4-6 International Builders
Show at the Las Vegas Convention
Center in Las Vegas. For details, visit
www.buildersshow.com.
FEB. 11-13 World Ag Expo at the In-
ternational Agri-Center in Tulare, Calif.
Visit www.worldagexpo.com.
FEB. 13 PERC Meeting via confer-
ence call. For details, contact Anna
Lombardo at anna.lombardo@
propane.com or 202-452-8975.
FEB. 27 Western Propane Gas As-
sociation Boad Meeting at the Hilton
Garden Inn in Elk Grove, Calif. For de-
tails, contact Lesley Garland at exec@
westernpga.org or 916-447-9742.
MARCH 2-5 NPGA Spring Technol-
ogy, Standards & Safety Committee
Meeting at the Hilton in Indianapolis.
For details, contact Jacque McCracken
at jmccracken@npga.org.

MARCH 6-8 Hearth, Patio & Barbe-
cue Expo at the Salt Palace Convention
Center in Salt Lake City. For details,
visit www.hpbexpo.com.
APRIL 6-8 Virginia Propane Gas
Association Spring Meeting at the
Sanderling Resort in Duck, N.C. For
details, contact Baron Glassgow at
bglassgow@npga.org.
APRIL 11 LP Gas Hall of Fame Induc-
tion Ceremony in Atlanta. For more
information, contact Brian Kanaba at
bkanaba@northcoastmedia.net or
216-706-3745.
[
EVENTS
]
24
|
LPGas October 2013
SCHOOL TRANSPORTATI ON
Propane brings
spark-ignited engine
back to Kentucky
25 years after
fatal crash
Piloting
progress
I
t was a late night after a long day
at Kings Island amusement park.
The bus was full of happy, ex-
hausted teenagers and their chap-
erones making the 170-mile jour-
ney home to Radcliff, Ky., after
spending the day on roller coasters and
thrill rides. Sixty-six members of the
Radcliff First Assembly of God Church
and a driver made the May 14, 1988, trip
to the theme park, north of Cincinnati,
in the 1977 Ford B-700 former school
bus they used for church excursions.
But 27 of them did not make it home.
Just before 11 p.m., a small Toyota
pickup truck with an intoxicated driver
traveling the wrong way on Interstate
71 near Carrollton, Ky., collided almost
head-on with the bus, crushing its front
door. As passersby and some passengers
tried to evacuate the panicked children
from the rear exit, sparks from the metal
suspension ignited, leaking highly flam-
mable gasoline from the punctured
tank. Flames engulfed the bus, killing
27 passengers and injuring 34.
What became known as
the worst school bus crash
in U.S. history led to nu-
merous safety changes in
Kentucky school buses
among them, a prohibition
on the use of spark-ignited
engines like the one that
erupted in f lames that
night. The National Trans-
portation Safety Board
cited fuel system integrity
of school buses as a safety
issue that contributed to the accident.
Since then, for 25 years, diesel has
powered all school buses throughout
Kentucky.
Until this fall.
A case for propane
In an effort to improve efficiency, save
fuel costs and be more environmentally
friendly, Crittenden County School
District lobbied for and won common-
wealth approval to try a propane-fueled
school bus in its fleet. It is the first spark-
ignited engine in a Kentucky school bus
since the 1988 accident.
Rachel Yarbrough, superintendent of
Crittenden County Schools, some 240
miles west of the accident site, says the
conversation began because
she wanted to improve effi-
ciency throughout the dis-
trict, including the energy
used to transport the dis-
tricts 1,300 students. With
35 buses traveling 298,000
miles a year, diesel costs
were significant.
We take very seriously
the stewardship we have of
our resources, Yarbrough
says. We have tried our
best to look at every single area where
we can be more efficient to maintain a
high-quality learning experience for the
students of Crittenden County. If you re-
ally want to be efficient, you have to
be willing to consider alternatives out-
side what youre currently doing.
Living in the rolling hills of Ken-
tucky, residents and district officials
were familiar with propane, which is
commonly used to heat their homes and
readily available. They also took note of
its sharply decreased price compared
with diesel.
Wayne Winters, the districts lead ve-
hicle mechanic, was willing to consider
alternative fuels. He conducted research,
then assembled a committee to study the
feasibility of propane.
May 14, 1988, definitely changed
student transportation in the state of
Kentucky forever, Winters says. I
would daresay Kentucky is the strictest
in the nation with the safety of the buses.
Even the thoughts of a propane bus
[raise concerns] of fire and explosions,
so the first thing I did was look at safety.
What he found was a decades-old
track record of safe, propane-fueled,
spark-ignition buses in school districts
around the country, including in Ari-
zona, Illinois, Missouri, Oregon and
California.
Once he was satisfied with its safety,
Winters was impressed with how clean-
burning propane is, with low emis-
sions. Thats important for a vehicle that
spends a lot of its time idling outside of
schools and near children with growing
lungs.
The engine stays clean. The ex-
haust stays really, really clean, with no
BY JENNIFER WEBB
CONTRIBUTING EDITOR
Continued on page 26
www.LPGasmagazine.com October 2013 LPGas
|
25
SCHOOL TRANSPORTATI ON
The Crittenden County School District has its own propane refueling tank.
Photos courtesy of Crittenden County Schools
Yarbrough
soot buildup, he says. Its just so much
cleaner than the old diesel engines, or
even the new diesel engines.
Changing policy
With the committees support, Winters
approached the Kentucky Department
of Education (KDE) about changing its
policy. It wasnt easy.
It didnt go very well at first, he
acknowledges. It took us six to eight
months to get a conversation going on
a propane bus.
Eventually, he presented a proposal
to Kentucky Department of Education
board members July 26, 2012, and with
Winters persistence, research and en-
thusiasm, they were persuaded.
I think the more KDE looked at it,
Continued on page 28
Continued from page 25
26
|
LPGas October 2013 www.LPGasmagazine.com
SCHOOL TRANSPORTATI ON
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they knew it wasnt a matter of if but
when they brought it to Kentucky, he
says.
By Sept. 27 last year, Crittenden
County received notification that it
could pilot the first propane-powered
bus. On March 6, the district received
an $80,000 grant from the Kentucky
Division for Air Quality to reduce diesel
emissions from its bus fleet. The funds
were made available through the feder-
al Environmental Protection Agencys
Diesel Emission Reduction Act.
The grant helped the district replace
a 1992 model diesel bus with a $95,000,
2014 Blue Bird Propane Vision bus. It
also retrofitted 14 other diesel buses in
Continued from page 26
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LPGas October 2013 www.LPGasmagazine.com
SCHOOL TRANSPORTATI ON
I
CF International is forecasting
strong growth for propane in
the school bus market, from
about 20 million gallons in 2012
to more than 200 million gallons
by 2020, says Mike Sloan, principal
at the Virginia-based energy firm.
Propane currently holds about 20
to 25 percent of the school bus
market, seeing 6,000 to 8,000 unit
sales per year out of a market of
25,000 to 30,000, Sloan says. Blue
Bird, Thomas Built and Collins offer
propane-fueled school buses.
THE SCHOOL BUS
MARKET
its fleet with emission-control technolo-
gies to reduce tailpipe emissions of par-
ticulate matter by nearly 50 percent with
closed-crankcase ventilation systems.
River Region Propane, a division of
United Propane Gas, installed a refuel-
ing tank on district property at no cost
to the district except for pouring the
concrete pad. The district locked in a
yearlong price of $1.28 per gallon com-
pared with $4 per gallon of diesel.
Andy Keister, plant manager of River
Region Propane, says he is happy to
partner with Crittenden County Schools
to supply its propane. Not only does au-
togas provide a good opportunity for
retailers like him, whose business across
nine counties is 85 percent residential
homeowner heat, it helps the schools
and keeps money in the community.
Its really good all the way around
for everybody, Keister says. I felt all
along this was something we should do.
Winters is pleased with the use of
propane in his fleet for several reasons:

Less expensive fuel. Fuel costs will


be at least 50 percent lower for this pro-
pane-fueled bus than its diesel counter-
parts. So far this school year, the bus has
traveled 1,332 miles at a cost of 23 cents
per mile for fuel, compared with 50 to 52
Continued on page 30
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W
ith the launch of its pilot
program, Kentucky joins a
growing number of states
that are turning to propane autogas-
fueled school buses.
When you compare the cost
advantages of propane on top of
the environmental advantages its
easy to see why.
Chuck Harvill, general manager
of Tennessee and Kentucky opera-
tions for Central States Bus Sales
in Lebanon, Tenn., says it can cost
$8,000 to $10,000 to convert a die-
sel bus to run on propane. But that
initial investment is paid off in four
to five years in fuel savings alone.
Propane averages $1.50 per gallon,
while diesel is averaging $4 a gallon.
We believe in it, Harvill says. We
believe that its cleaner, more effi-
cient and definitely cheaper.
Michael Taylor, director of auto-
gas business development for the
Propane Education & Research
Council (PERC), acknowledges that
a propane engines miles-per-gallon
statistic will be about 15 percent
lower than that of a diesel engine.
But, especially when combined with
a 50-cent tax credit for each gallon of
the alternative fuel, the savings from
lower maintenance costs and high
performance makes up for it.
Propane has evolved into the
automotive fuel for today, Taylor
says. Were using current automo-
tive technology, and its providing
the performance and results that
we need.
A propane bus will last at least 15
years and 200,000 miles, Harvill says.
We believe its longer because
its so clean, theres no carbon in the
engine, service intervals can be lon-
ger, oil doesnt break down and get
as dirty, if at all, he says. We believe
the engine will last every bit as long
[as diesel], if not longer.
And theyre not hard for mechan-
ics to service. The buses come with
a five-year warranty, during which
time the local Ford dealer repairs
them. And after that?
The beauty of it is, its a very
common engine platform, Harvill
explains.
Schools in Portland, Ore., have
used propane buses in their fleets
for 30 years, Taylor says, adding that
PERC projects that 10 percent of
all school buses purchased in the
United States this year will run on
propane. Mesa, Ariz., Public Schools
has saved more than $4.43 million
over five years with its 90 propane
buses and hopes to convert its entire
517-bus fleet to propane autogas.
Brian Carney of Roush CleanTech,
which makes the fuel system for Blue
Bird, says sales have doubled every
year since 2010 as vehicle owners
come to appreciate the benefits of
dedicated propane over diesel, gaso-
line or bi-fuel systems.
As school districts across the
country look to reduce their operat-
ing expenses, many are turning to
propane. Taylor says he gets several
calls every week from schools asking
about propane buses.
They have learned real quick that
they need to find a fuel that will
reduce, No. 1, their operating cost,
he says.
When you look at the price of fuel
at the pump and what is required to
maintain diesel engines today, its
very expensive, and propane gives
some relief, he says. So if we can
encourage a prospective customer
to look beyond the initial purchase
price conversion costs and the minor
decrease in MPG performance and
get them to look at lifecycle costs, its
a no-brainer. And were seeing those
costs come down.
Jennifer Webb
THE CASE FOR PROPANE-FUELED BUSES cents per mile for the diesel buses. The
propane bus is getting about 4.8 miles
per gallon, but Winters expects that to
improve to 6.5 or even 7 miles per gal-
lon after it breaks in. It will cost the
district about $8,100 to run each diesel
bus the average distance of 16,000 miles
this school year, compared with $3,680
for the propane bus, he says.

Cheaper oil changes. Winters says


the district spends $384 per year on oil
changes for the diesel buses. He expects
to spend just $79.62 a year for the pro-
pane bus because it holds less oil and
filters cost less.

Reduced dependence on foreign


oil. I wish we could buy everything we
do here in Crittenden County so the
money circulates here, Winters says.
Or at least stay in the state, and then at
least within the United States. The more
resources we can use locally, the better it
is for everybody.

Fewer emissions. Cleaner-burning


engines keep Kentucky green and the
children healthy.
And this could be just the beginning.
Winters expects state agencies will soon
begin turning to propane autogas-fueled
vehicles, and more school districts will
embrace the savings and other benefits.
Chuck Harvill, general manager of
Tennessee and Kentucky operations for
Central States Bus Sales in Lebanon,
Tenn., who sold the bus, says he already
has fielded calls from three or four
Kentucky school districts interested in
knowing more. One wants to replace 14
or 15 buses, Harvill says.
More time needed
Enthusiasm for the return of a spark-
ignited engine is tempered, though, in
Hardin County Schools, where most of
the teens who died in the 1988 accident
had attended school.
John Skaggs, the districts transpor-
tation director, had coached several of
the teens in basketball and softball, and
he knew siblings of many of the others
who died.
Skaggs says he knows buses have had
30
|
LPGas October 2013 www.LPGasmagazine.com
SCHOOL TRANSPORTATI ON
Continued from page 28
many safety enhancements
since then. Hes intrigued by
the potential savings.
Were going to watch
pretty closely how they turn
out [in Crittenden], Skaggs
says. We do have some
concerns. Well let them go
through the year and look at
the safety a little more before
wed even think about order-
ing one.
Although the bus was not
from the Hardin County Schools, the
community suffered greatly. One of the
teens who survived the accident now
is on Skaggs staff as a driver, and he
speaks every year to the students on the
accidents anniversary. The high school
where many of the victims had attended
school is adjacent to the cemetery where
they are buried. A large, granite memo-
rial at North Hardin Memorial Gardens
in Radcliff honors those who died.
Were kind of wait-and-see right
now, Skaggs says. Everyones kind of
excited about the fuel savings, but also
theres the other side of the coin.
Yarbrough says the time was right
for the commonwealth to reconsider its
ban on spark-ignited engines in school
buses. In the 25 years since the accident,
technology has advanced and the safety
of propane buses has been
proved in other states, giving
Kentucky officials enough
research to consider before
approving the pilot.
For KDE to take a chance
on cracking the door for
a pilot propane bus is, in
some ways, remarkable, even
though there is this over-
whelming evidence of their
safety ratings and account
after account of school dis-
tricts that have used them over time,
she says. Had we approached KDE
three years after the bus accident, there
would have been no way.
But enough time has passed, enough
quality research [has been conducted]
where propane buses have been used in
a very safe way, and its taken this much
time for those individuals to even crack
the door to being open to a pilot for a
propane-fueled school bus. LPG
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www.LPGasmagazine.com October 2013 LPGas
|
31
SCHOOL TRANSPORTATI ON
The school district is paying $1.28 per
gallon from United Propane Gas.
Training day
K
yle McCalla is one of 19 propane re-
tailers in the room, and at 27 years
old he might be the youngest. Mc-
Calla is here, like the others, be-
cause he wants to know what it will
take to get his company involved in
propane autogas.
Surely, hes excited about the markets poten-
tial and the forecasts for autogas. ICF Interna-
tional, for example, is predicting annual sales
of more than 40,000 propane-powered on-road
vehicles by 2020. Subsequently, ICF Interna-
tional is expecting a related increase in propane
consumption of more than 400 million gallons
by that same year.
Some predictions are mind-boggling, and
theyve driven retailers like McCalla here today.
McCalla, a commercial energy specialist at
United Landmark LLC in Lancaster, Ohio,
hasnt made an autogas-related sale to this point.
Hes had conversations with a few school dis-
tricts that are considering converting buses, and
he has contacts that can help United Landmark
branch into propane-powered mowers.
Still, McCalla has more questions than an-
swers. And judging from the room full of retail-
ers on this day, so do the others.
Basically the only thing standing in our
way [from autogas] is ourselves, says McCalla,
in a phone interview following the Propane
32
|
LPGas October 2013 www.LPGasmagazine.com
Eager minds want to know what it takes to launch
propane companies into autogas
BY KEVIN YANIK
|
MANAGING EDITOR
kyanik@northcoastmedia.net
AUTOGAS
Don Heller, vice president
of propane technologies
at Bergquist, walks
retailers through the
mechanics of an autogas
dispenser during the
companys open house
Aug. 20 in Toledo, Ohio.
Education & Research Councils (PERC) Marketer Technol-
ogy and Sales Training seminar on propane autogas, hosted
at Bergquist in Toledo, Ohio. I want our company to be the
source of information for our customers. If I go to a customer
I want to have an answer, and if I dont have an answer I want
to be able to get back to them quickly.
Getting started
The biggest hurdle in McCallas way is establishing a customer
base. Other retailers likely face this same challenge. Fortunate-
ly for them, much of the days discussion centers on how to
make a successful sale.
One avenue to start the sales process is, of course, over the
phone. How should a call start? What shouldnt retailers say?
To find some answers, retailers in this classroom are asked to
huddle in small groups.
A group of seven retailers huddles in a corner and shifts
into a conversation about alternative fuel tax credits. A couple
of retailers in the group see these as a key talking point to get a
potential customers attention.
If [customers] are not aware of them, bring them up to
speed on them, says Dave Bertelsen, the national product
AUTOGAS
Your sales approach
As you shift from attempting to make one sale to the
next, do you ever stop to ask yourself if the approach
youre taking is the right one? Its not an easy question to
ask in some cases, because youll be devoting time and
effort to making changes if you dont like the answer.
Still, its a question worth asking. Its a particularly
worthwhile question for both industry veterans and
newcomers to ask themselves as they attempt to make
propane autogas-related sales. Autogas is new terri-
tory for many, so having the right approach going into
a potential customer is a must for subsequent sales to
occur.
Regardless, whether youre just getting started in
autogas or looking to shift gears in that field, here
are five areas to consider when youre in sales mode,
according to Sales Transformation Nows Charlie Emery.
1. Preparation. What do you know about the busi-
ness youre approaching? Do you have a contact going
in, or are you blindly hoping to find the decision maker?
One way to get started is to do research. What falls
off the table is the preparation, Emery says. Anybody
have those months where youre really chasing sales
and you need to make some numbers? Were really run-
ning and gunning sometimes, but with all due respect
please focus on the research.
2. Approach. Why should the person youre calling
talk to you? According to Emery, the average person
is called on 39 times by salespeople in a given month.
Considering that number, prospective customers likely
have enough experience to cast you off with the rest.
So have a good hook at the start, and have a hook
thats specific to their business. Nine times out of 10,
youre not going to make a sale, but theyll give you the
opportunity to continue to get into a conversation [and
do] a needs analysis.
3. Needs analysis. What are your prospective cus-
tomers goals, problems and desires? Retailers will
eventually be confronted with having to discuss price,
but delaying that conversation in favor of one that gives
you further intel about the customers business can only
help move the process along. Emery suggests asking
questions such as these: Does your fleet come back to
a central location at the end of the day, and how many
vehicles will you purchase over the next 24 months?
4. Gain agreement in principle and later in price.
These steps may be a ways down the road following a
needs analysis, but if retailers can prove theres value in
autogas, Emery advises gaining an agreement in prin-
ciple and discussing price secondarily.
October 2013 LPGas
|
33
Continued on page 34
Opportunities in
autogas are driving
programs designed
to train retailers on
how to make a sale. I
S
T
O
C
K
P
H
O
T
O
.
C
O
M
/
G
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E
G
O
R
Z

P
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manager at Valley National Gases.
Bertelsen goes on to tell the group a
success story about how he had a con-
tact who led him to a meeting about
propane-powered vehicles with a
school board. One key to the initial sale
was vendor support, Bertelsen says. His
vendors were able to answer some of the
customers more technical questions.
A lot of our different vendors are
more than willing to come with us to
meetings, he says. A high-pressure
pump is needed to fill the new liquid-
injection [equipment]. Its not like the
old days, and thats why its nice to part-
ner with one of your vendors.
Turning the conversation
Once the groups disperse, retailers are
asked to role-play in an autogas-related
sales call scenario. McCalla volunteers
and makes a pitch to the seminars in-
structor, who acts as a prospective cus-
tomer with fleet vehicles.
I think I have a good alternative to
diesel or gasoline, McCalla says at one
point.
The instructor responds with per-
haps the obvious question: How much
is a propane-powered vehicle? The ques-
tion is legitimate, and one most retailers
should be prepared for. So how should
they respond?
Bertelsen takes a stab at a response
in a different role-playing scenario with
the seminars instructor, who acts as a
school board member and a prospective
customer. Bertelsen starts his pitch with
a statement that notes all school districts
are pressed for cash. The role-playing
instructor responds that hes heard pro-
pane-powered vehicles are more expen-
sive than some diesel vehicles.
Again, back to price. But Bertelsen
has an answer.
Yes, but there are some government
incentives, and we have the expertise
to come in and talk about lower emis-
sions, less cost for maintenance and
savings youre going to have in fuel,
Bertelsen says. If youre looking at die-
sel at $4 per gallon, you might cut that
with propane.
Once this role-playing scenario
is over, the instructor provides some
34
|
LPGas October 2013 www.LPGasmagazine.com
AUTOGAS
Continued from page 33
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analysis of the pitch Bertelsen made.
The instructor points out that Bertelsen
steered the conversation toward return
on investment to avoid an upfront con-
versation about price that could lead to
sticker shock. Also, Bertelsen offered
experts to service the school district,
and he immediately mentioned how
the price can be reduced with govern-
ment rebates.
An unfortunate dynamic exists, the
instructor adds, in that salespeople are
often moved too quickly from their
initial greeting with a customer to an
abrupt question about the products
price. Time isnt ample for many pro-
spective customers, of course, so its
critical for some of them to race ahead
to price.
A key step in successfully making a
sale, the instructor says, is to perform
a needs analysis and, perhaps more
critically, to establish a conversation
around the prospective customers
needs before they hang up the phone.
Selling something thats relatively
unknown, such as autogas, elevates the
challenge salespeople face.
If we can get started and get in with
a school, I think thats going to be a good
way to get our name out there, McCalla
says. Word of mouth is huge, so we need
to get into that first school district and
tell them how much they can save and
about the service we can offer.
Not saying the wrong thing
Allen Dunlap, who sits in another area
of the classroom, agrees with McCalla
about word of mouth being a useful
marketing tool for autogas. But just
as propane retailers can benefit from
word-of-mouth marketing, they can be
set back if unsatisfied customers tell the
world how their propane retailer did
them wrong on autogas.
A few retailers probably find them-
selves in this situation already, having
rushed into the market unable to prop-
erly supply or service customers. Dun-
lap doesnt want to suffer their fate, and
thats a reason why hes here learning
about autogas.
I want to better service clients
and future clients, says Dunlap, who
www.LPGasmagazine.com October 2013 LPGas
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35
AUTOGAS
Continued on page 36
One avenue to start
the sales process is, of
course, over the phone.
How should a call
start? What shouldnt
retailers say?
is both president of Lindens Propane Service
Inc. and the Ohio Propane Gas Association. I
dont want to make a misstatement and give the
industry a black eye. Youre never going to get
a return sale if you dont do it right the first
time.
So far, Dunlap hasnt had autogas customers
knocking down his door. Hes had a few people
call with an interest, but where Dunlap is based
in LaGrange, Ohio southwest of Cleveland
autogas is very much still in its infancy.
Dunlap sees opportunity to speed up auto-
gas development in the area, but he believes re-
tailers like himself need to be properly trained
how to sell and service it.
I feel customers know enough to get us in
trouble, Dunlap says. Theyre coming to us
thinking were the industry professional.
Propane retailers are the obvious place to
turn for all things autogas, but Dunlap says
even the most seasoned industry veterans need
more education because technologies have
vastly changed.
Weve dealt with pumps for 20 years, and
this is similar yet dissimilar technology be-
cause of different pressures, he says. A lot of
us are just ignorant. A lot of the education has
not gotten into the field.
Besides education, logistics are one of Dun-
laps autogas-related concerns.
There have been success stories, but our
sales window goes down May to October, he
says. A school needs a bus in mid-August.
Weve got the cart in front of the horse in some
cases, and I think there are some issues. Weve
got to get with the suppliers.
An investment in autogas is also a scary
proposition for some retailers, Dunlap says.
We used to get a propane dispenser for
$1,200, he says. Now, youre talking $8,500.
For more information about marketer train-
ing sessions, visit www.propanecouncil.org/
MTST. LPG
AUTOGAS
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Propane retailers
participate in a written
exercise as part of the
Propane Education
& Research Councils
Marketer Technology and
Sales Training seminar on
propane autogas.
Continued from page 35
One retailer sees
opportunity to speed up
autogas development in his
area, but he believes proper
training is needed on how to
sell and service it.
www.LPGasmagazine.com October 2013 LPGas
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37
B
rian Feehans propane industry past
spans about 15 years, as he held
key market development roles with
the World LP Gas Association (in
France), the Propane Vehicle Council
and the Propane Education & Research Coun-
cil (PERC). With PERC, he was a vice president
tasked with developing the on- and off-road
engine fuel markets.
Feehan left PERC in 2011 to become presi-
dent of the Washington, D.C.-based Industrial
Truck Association (ITA). Its membership is
composed of manufacturers of lift trucks, tow tractors, rough
terrain vehicles, hand-pallet trucks and automated guided
vehicles, as well as parts suppliers, throughout the United
States, Canada and Mexico. ITA represents 90 percent of the
forklift manufacturers in the United States and Canada.
LP Gas Editor in Chief Brian Richesson talked with the
Maine native about his role with ITA and the changes taking
place in the forklift industry today relative to propane.
LP Gas: Can you tell us about the Industrial
Truck Association and the role you play as
president?
Feehan: This group traces its roots back to the
late 1920s and has been in its current form since
1951. Weve been here in D.C. for about 30 years.
We have the traditional association structure
board of directors, executive committee and
regular standing committees, where a lot of the
work gets done.
Within our general engineering committee is
an air quality subcommittee that keeps its eyes on whats going
on from a regulations standpoint, with both EPA and CARB,
from an emissions perspective as well as other environmental
regulations. This is an important area for the propane industry.
One of my responsibilities is to make sure all of those com-
mittees function the way they are supposed to function. An-
other particular focus for me has been on the strategic direc-
tion of the organization, what the members of the organization
Continued on page 38
Former propane industry leader with strong autogas ties
heads North American forklift association
FORKLI FTS
Feehan
SHOULDERING
THE LOAD
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would like us to achieve.
When I first started at ITA, I took a comprehensive look at
what the organization was doing and put together a strategic
plan that looked forward to the next three to five years. It was
also necessary for me to evaluate the image or brand of the as-
sociation. This is a very solid membership-based organization,
but we needed to bring us into the 21st century. We changed
the logo, website and took a comprehensive look at the com-
munications program, what the ITA brand stands for and how
we serve our members and the industry. Now we have created
an electronic newsletter that is distributed to members, en-
hanced the statistics program with an upgraded software sys-
tem and made some internal and external changes to enhance
the value of the association.
I also have to follow closely whats going on in the inter-
national community. Tariff and trade issues are some of our
highest priorities.
LP Gas: Was it difficult to leave the propane industry or
were you ready for a new challenge?
Feehan: It was definitely difficult, but the opportunity to
run an established trade association doesnt come up often. I
started in the propane industry in 1998 and developed a lot of
relationships with good people. Of course, I loved what I used
to do, but this is an exciting opportunity.
LP Gas: How much communication, if any, does your as-
sociation currently have with the propane industry?
Feehan: Our members are very interested in whats going on
with propane. Its still a very large market segment. Almost all
of our members build and sell propane-powered forklifts, so
they are always interested in whats going on from a propane
perspective, including fuel-supply and fuel-quality perspec-
tives. We keep an eye pretty closely on energy for a variety of
reasons. Your sources of supply [for forklifts] are electric power
as well as propane, diesel, natural gas, gasoline, so we always
know whats going on [with fuel sources].
LP Gas: Have your ties to the propane industry and
knowledge of propane been beneficial in your work
with ITA? In what ways?
Feehan: One of the more beneficial parts was what I learned
from a regulations and emissions perspective when it comes
FORKLI FTS
Continued from page 37
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Continued on page 40
to internal combustion engines and dealing with regulatory
authorities, but also having the global perspective on market
development. That was probably one of the bigger, if not the
biggest, advantages the experience I got not only working
in France and market development around the world but also
working with various cultures of companies and international
governing bodies, navigating different cultures and different
approaches, the way people conduct business, was very benefi-
cial. That international and market development experience
continued when I came back to the U.S. working at PERC.
LP Gas: We hear propane-fueled forklifts are losing mar-
ket share to electric forklifts. Can you confirm this trend
and the reasons propane is falling behind, or is propane
still running strong, in your opinion?
Feehan: From an internal combustion perspective, propane
is still running strong. It is the standard
fuel for the forklift industry for internal
Dont Wait For An Accident To Happen!
Sure, there are many who would prefer to stick their collective heads in
the sand, but that is not an enviable position when an accident occurs.
With over 35 years experience in the propane industry, I am committed
to presentations that eliminate complacency, expose liability threats and
motivate employees to take safety compliance from the head to the heart.
www.thesafetyleader.com
952-935-5350
Sign up online to purchase my safety newsletter today!
JAYJOHNSTON
The Safety Leader
Propane Safety.
Nothing To Hide.
Propane and the
forklift market
Propane falls into two classes of
forklifts Class IV and Class V.
Before the recession, it made up
more than 60 percent of the lift
truck market, according to the 2013
Propane Market Outlook by ICF
International. But that market share
fell to less than 50 percent in 2011.
The propane industry sold 415
million gallons of propane into this
market segment in 2012, down
from the 470 million gallons being
sold before the recession hit in
2008, notes Mike Sloan, principal at
ICF International.
Sloan says 420,000 propane fork-
lifts are in operation today, averag-
ing just less than 1,000 gallons in
annual sales per unit.
ICF International is completing
a study for the Propane Education
& Research Council on propane-
powered forklifts and how they can
compete more effectively in todays
marketplace.
The technology for electric
forklifts is improving faster than the
technology for propane forklifts,
Sloan says. Batteries are getting
better and less expensive, the oper-
ating characteristics are improving,
battery life is improving, and in
addition to that the nature of the
industries that use forklifts have
been changing over time in a way
that favors the electric forklifts.
Continued from page 38
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FORKLI FTS
Continued on page 42
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combustion engines. There have been some changes in the
marketplace over the past couple of years; some trends have
started to develop.
You first have to look at what the economy is doing, how
the market segments within the economy are performing and
what the types of products are coming out of those market
segments. It is important to take that into consideration when
looking at the market share and size and the products being
sold, that you factor in the job required of the forklift as a prod-
uct for those segments and the type of technology available for
those market segments. Thats where you are starting to see
increases in technology from an electric standpoint, now able
to perform some of the functions that only internal combus-
tion engines used to perform and where you start to see some
erosion in the marketplace.
A lot of research and development has been invested in bat-
tery technology that improves the overall performance of the
electric truck, including lifting capacities, speed, run times.
LP Gas: The propane industry is working toward, what
it calls, a new generation of forklifts, with lower operat-
ing costs and better emissions characteristics. Can the
industry make up for market-share losses or is electric
forklift technology superior?
Feehan: I see an awful lot of money and technology develop-
ment going into the battery side, infrastructure on the charg-
ing side, as well as productivity of the electric forklift.
There are regulations imposed on manufacturers; they have
to make continuous investments in research and technology to
meet those standards.
One type of fuel delivery strategy in off road is hybrid tech-
nology, but its not with propane. Its with diesel. A few manu-
facturers have diesel electric hybrids. That type of technology
is out there, but we need to take that technology and apply it to
the U.S. The market would be propane electric. It would have
to be done with a lot of things in mind, and cost would be one
of them. There are also opportunities for the propane industry
to look at fuel delivery strategies with OEM partners.
LP Gas: What types of comments are you hearing from
your manufacturers about the fuel being used in their
equipment? What are their biggest issues?
Feehan: Theyre constantly involved in or are looking at fuel
quality. Current and future emissions standards require good
fuel quality. Development of technology can accommodate
variations of fuel quality to a certain degree, but fuel quality is
www.LPGasmagazine.com October 2013 LPGas
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41
FORKLI FTS
FORKLI FTS
an important component. You need to have good fuel quality
to achieve the stringent emissions standards.
LP Gas: What are some of the technological advances
being made in your industry?
Feehan: Battery technology and the increased productivity
of electric trucks. Its all about measuring efficiency the ef-
ficiency of the operator, how efficient are they in the process
of their job; fleet management systems, making sure your fleet
is optimized for its role; truck productivity, truck durability,
automation; fleet usage data is constantly being looked at and
improved on; fuel cells; people look at lifecycle costs from the
manufacturers cost of the product; they are always looking at
safety; from a charging perspective conventional charging,
opportunity charging and fast charging; battery perspective
lithium-ion batteries, super capacitors, flywheel technology;
natural gas technology, LP technology, diesel; hydraulic fluid
pressure technology with combustion engines.
LP Gas: Turning to autogas in general. Propane industry
outlooks show great potential for the internal combus-
tion engine market, specifically engines for on-road
vehicles and lawn mowers. Do you agree with these
outlooks or do you feel the challenges outweigh the
opportunities?
Feehan: I started off in the propane industry in France for four
years, and when I came back to the States the autogas market
was not in great shape. It was almost like an infant market all
over again. We had a mature industry with an infant market
but with fantastic opportunities. The programs that had been
successful in Australia, England, France, Poland and in other
places I knew if we used some of those programs as models we
could be successful in the U.S. again. We also needed to build a
cohesive approach to market development. We went from hav-
ing very few products available from an on-road perspective to
a wealth of products in many market segments today.
Its also true when you look at the off-road segment. When
we first started doing commercial mowers five, six years ago,
we had one [compared to more than 12 OEMs today]. If you
look at that marketplace today, its still an infant market with
tremendous opportunity for the propane industry.
If you look at the consumption of fuel that takes place in the
autogas market alone, on and off road, the propane industry
should be driving millions of gallons through the segments
that exist. Its a regular paycheck for a lot of companies. LPG
The Supply You Need. When You Need It.
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Continued from page 41
www.LPGasmagazine.com October 2013 LPGas
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43
S
afety can be a huge fac-
tor in achieving growth
due to the perceived
cost of training and
customer compliance. While
most companies do their best
to train and help customers
comply, sometimes it is easier
to do nothing.
When we do become aware
of a situation that is out of code
and potentially unsafe, there
is sometimes pressure to allow
rationalization and political
influence to grant some variance or ex-
ception. Profits earned would be mini-
mal in relation to the liability exposures
and yet, due to immediate cost or short-
term inconvenience, some parties look
the other way.
Why would a propane company
with millions of dollars at stake ignore
a safety situation?
Drivers are filling tanks because
they are told to. Consumers do not
want to pay for the cost of making
sure their system is in compliance.
The prospect of losing a customer over
safety concerns can result in one more
dent in an already-battered bottom
line. It is also highly possible that an-
other marketer may step in and supply
such an unsafe situation, just to pick
up the load. Where is the fairness in
that?
In the short term, the cost of doing
nothing looks cheaper than the cost
of compliance. In truth, the cost of
doing nothing creates liability threats.
Why would a local or state fire
authority ignore a situation that may
put its citizens and emergency person-
nel in harms way? I believe it is partly
because politics exist in all endeavors,
including fire safety.
Looking the other way or granting a
variance is just another excuse for not
ruffling the local feathers of founding
fathers. On the other hand, less-politi-
cal entrepreneurs are handed the rule-
book and fined for noncompliance.
If nothing ever happens, no one
cares, but one bad accident involving
prior knowledge can create liabilities
for authorities having jurisdiction as
well.
Why would a propane customer
fail to allow his supplier to perform a
safety inspection? A majority of retail
customers who reject a gas system
check are hiding something.
I hesitate to consider all of the sor-
did reasons someone may not want a
service tech in his basement. It could
be bad housekeeping or some illegal
enterprise, but there is no
question that such lack of ac-
cess can thwart a marketers
ability to perform and docu-
ment safety checks. This is
a major reason marketers
find it difficult to achieve the
highest percentage of such
documentation.
In my opinion, all of these
folks do not understand the
cost of doing nothing.
Every year we have con-
sumer situations where the
faulty work of do-it-yourselfers or
contractors causes accidents. Plain-
tiffs attorneys are standing in line to
represent their interests in the cost of
doing nothing.
Expert witnesses will receive ob-
scene amounts of money to expose any
loophole that creates doubt about your
safety credibility. You cannot afford to
ignore the high cost of that reality.
I will never apologize for promot-
ing propane safety neither should
you nor our friends who enforce fire
safety. We all own the responsibility
to leave our comfort zone, stand up to
be counted and be part of the safety
solution.
When it comes to propane safety,
no one can afford the cost of doing
nothing. LPG
Jay Johnston (www.thesafetyleader.com)
is an independent insurance agent, busi-
ness consultant, safety leadership coach
and motivational speaker. He is the au-
thor of the books The Practice of Safety
and A Leap of Faith Takes Courage.
Jay can be reached at 952-935-5350 or
jay@thesafetyleader.com.
The cost of doing nothing
Liability threats await companies that choose to look the other way
COLUMNIST
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JAY JOHNSTON
Why would a propane
company with millions of
dollars at stake ignore a
safety situation?
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e recently handled a case
involving a house fire that
resulted in serious burn
injuries to one of the inhab-
itants. She ultimately lost her life. Her
spouse sustained some burn injuries
but to a much lesser degree.
The only surviving witness to the
accident was the spouse. Theres no
question a gas leak into the home ig-
nited in this case. The ignition source
was disputed, but a strong suspect was
the decedent lighting a cigarette in the
basement just before the explosion that
took her life.
The gas leak came from a broken gas
line on the outside of the home that was
about 12 inches off the ground. The
line did not have sufficient supports as
code requires. There had been a bliz-
zard in the area in the days leading up
to this accident, and the blizzard was
unusual in that it came from the oppo-
site direction of most blizzards.
The blizzard put snow on the side of
the home where the accident later oc-
curred. The snow buildup caused the
gas line to break. It is unclear exactly
how the gas entered the basement, but a
basement window crack along the wall
with the gas line was a possibility.
The defendants in the case were the
gas supplier, the company that leased
the tank and a siding company that
put up siding years before the accident.
The gas company was alleged to
have not properly inspected the site
when it delivered gas. The tank in-
stalled was 8.5 feet from the home
instead of the required 10 feet, and the
company was alleged it should have
noted a lack of pipe supports.
There were also criticisms of the
industrys warnings program and the
odorant in the gas. Written warnings
were given to the homeowners, but they
claimed they did not recall seeing them.
The surviving spouse had a lot of famil-
iarity with propane through his work.
He actually installed the gas system to
his home to include the pipe that failed.
The tank owner was a separate com-
pany from the propane retailer. Some of
its owners were also owners of the pro-
pane retailer. The tank owner was never
at the site of the accident. It was alleged
it had the same responsibilities as the
propane retailer to inspect the tank
placement and pipe installation, and to
provide warnings about propane.
The siding company had put on new
siding to the home about 12 years be-
fore the fire. This company was alleged
to have removed some pipe fasteners
when it installed the new siding, and
that it failed to replace them.
There was a statute of repose in
place that precluded lawsuits arising
out of improvements to real property
that occurred more than 10 years be-
fore an event such as this accident. The
siding company attempted to avail itself
of this rule during the course of the
case. At the time the case resolved, this
legal issue was still in play.
Lab testing demonstrated that even
if the piping was fastened in compliance
with code, the force needed to break the
pipe was in excess of code requirements.
The defense took the position that
there was no code duty to inspect any-
thing more than the tank and the area
immediately around it to be sure the
tank was safe to fill. This area was code
compliant. The tank being too close
was not apparent when making a deliv-
ery, and this did not cause the leak.
The surviving widower installed
the system, and he was responsible for
any defects in it. The gas was tested
and properly odorized. Written warn-
ings from the Propane Education &
Research Council had been given to the
homeowners. The widower was trained
in propane through his work.
The company that owned the tank
looked to the retailer to perform any
inspections needed, to warn and to
provide properly odorized propane. It
adopted the defenses of the retailer.
The siding company claimed it
never removed any pipe fasteners. Some
post-accident photos and investigator
testimony showed no holes existed for
the missing fasteners in the wall under
the siding. In addition, the siding com-
pany alleged it could not be subject to
suit because it performed its work more
than 10 years before the accident.
Ultimately, the case resolved in a
confidential settlement. The takeaway
is that exposure in this type of case
can be far-reaching and involve novel
liability theories. LPG
John V. McCoy is with McCoy Leavitt
Laskey LLC, and his firm represents
industry members nationally. He can
be reached at 262-522-7007 or jmccoy@
MLLlaw.com.
COLUMNIST
|
JOHN V. McCOY
Debunking novel theories
A fatal house fire raises questions about a gas supplier and other entities
Snow buildup on the
side of the home caused
the gas line to break.
44
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COLUMNIST
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RANDY DOYLE
I
nformation technology (IT) proj-
ects are one of the most dreaded
challenges facing propane business
owners and executives.
This feeling is well founded. Many
experts estimate that more than half of
IT projects fail to meet their goals. IT
project cost is always significant up
to $100,000 for a single location inde-
pendent marketer to $100 million for a
large multi-state marketer.
Many employees do not like the
major change from new IT systems.
New IT systems take years of struggle
to implement. Its these and other rea-
sons that make the implementation of
new IT systems among the most chal-
lenging high-risk ventures any com-
pany will undertake. Therefore, busi-
ness owners and management should
take measures to prevent IT projects
from becoming a bottomless sinkhole
of money, time, frustrated employees,
angry customers and management
attention.
Major IT projects must be per-
formed well in all three phases to
avoid the IT sinkhole.
Software selection The project is
put on the right path by selecting a
software vendor with a proven track
record in the propane industry. Con-
versely, the wrong software vendor
will certainly mire the project in high
cost, long delays and even major busi-
ness disruption. Undoing the conse-
quences from selecting the wrong soft-
ware vendor is a complex challenge.
Software implementation and data
migration This dynamic phase of the
IT project is crucial because it impacts
employees and customers. Employees
must receive proper training and sup-
port to help their migration to the new
system. This may be the most difficult
challenge the project will face. Cus-
tomers are impacted because of the
look of new invoices and statements.
Adverse customer impact can occur
with data errors or lack of employee
readiness. Data migration requires
that the vast amount of data a propane
business generates be moved cleanly
from the old to the new database. An
experienced propane company techni-
cian who understands the nuances of
the data is best suited to do this com-
plex task well.
Business practices change The ob-
jective of the IT project is to improve
the companys business practices
through new technology, not merely
install a new computer system. This
aspect of the project takes years to
fully implement and requires under-
standing of how propane business
activities, such as bobtail operations,
are improved by the new IT system.
This phase of the project also requires
that employees abandon traditions
and practices with which they are
comfortable. Change is tough for
both employees and management.
The five essentials for avoiding the
IT sinkhole are:
Project leadership Any successful
project starts with effective leader-
ship. The leader needs a working
knowledge of IT, to be an effective
manager, to be trusted, to be able to
build consensus and to understand
the propane business.
The right software Select a reputable
software company that serves the
propane industry; dont build your
own. You will save money and time
by obtaining software that is proven
to meet the needs of the propane busi-
ness. Remember that you are in the
propane business, not in the business
of building IT systems. Beware of the
myth that a custom-built system cre-
ates competitive advantage. Finally,
software cost ranks eighth on the list
of 10 selection criteria.
Align key leaders All of the key lead-
ers must be part of a team that accepts
the IT project challenges. Otherwise,
finger pointing and conflict will cloud
the project.
Manage by realistic objectives Set
achievable milestones on your multi-
year marathon. Create accountability.
Otherwise the project will languish.
Beware of pundits who will make ex-
cuses and blame a variety of problems
on the IT project.
Focus on the three Ps patience, per-
severance with a focus on business
practices are needed to keep positive
energy throughout the project.
By avoiding the IT sinkhole and
successfully implementing your new
IT system, your company will be well
positioned to compete in the future. LPG
Randy Doyle is CFO for Blossman
Gas in Ocean Springs, Miss. He can be
reached at rdoyle@blossmangas.com.
Avoid the IT sinkhole
New-system implementation has challenges, essentials for success
Choose proven
industry software
because customized
systems arent always
advantageous.
www.LPGasmagazine.com October 2013 LPGas
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COLUMNIST
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TOM JAENICKE
S
ometimes we overlook smaller
opportunities for propane sales
when we chase those large mar-
kets such as home heating and
autogas.
The local beer, wine and spirits
industry is a good example of a some-
what hidden, but growing, private and
commercial market for propane sales.
Homebrewers, or hopheads, as they
fondly call themselves, usually use
lots of propane in the beer brewing
process. Brew kettles require large ca-
pacity high-pressure propane burners
for the mash cooking process. High
output burners of 60,000 to 100,000
Btus are commonly used by home-
brewers. They also use a large quantity
of hot water for bottle washing, equip-
ment cleaning and other processing
uses. There is no better answer for a
homebrewers hot water needs than a
propane tankless water heater.
Often homebrewers expand to the
commercial production of beer and
make propane the first choice for
their expanded craft brewing energy
needs. Propane serves microbrewers
well, whether they use direct fire on
the brew pots or a hot water bath pro-
cess. Lots of hot water is also needed
for small bottle and growler washing
and other sanitation needs. Propane
for space heating, water heating and
cooking also can be provided for ac-
companying sampling rooms and
restaurant operations that many mi-
crobrewers are including in their busi-
ness plans.
Vineyards, wineries and wine-
growers are a major part of the agri-
tourism boom that is sweeping across
many parts of the country. Vineyards,
wineries and tasting rooms are usually
located in rural areas where propane
is the best answer for space heating
and water heating needs. Wineries
use large quantities of hot water in
bottle washing, equipment cleaning
and other processing needs. Propane
tankless water heaters save space and
provide a continuous flow of hot water
during those critical winemaking
periods. If the winery is producing
spirits such as brandy, a steam boiler
usually is used in the distilling pro-
cess. Steam boilers are a propane load
you wont want to pass up.
Growth area
Licensing can vary by state, but many
areas of the country are now seeing a
growth in new small batch distilleries
that make whiskey, vodka, gin and
other spirit products. I recently visited
a new distillery near where I live that
has a 4-million-Btu steam boiler for
the distilling process. Watch for these
small batch distilleries popping up in
your marketing area.
Anytime you see a cider mill, it is
in rural America. Cider mills can use
large amounts of propane for space
heating, water heating and other ener-
gy needs. Commercially licensed cider
mills need lots of water to help clean
and sanitize equipment.
One of the hottest areas of develop-
ment in the adult beverage market is
hard cider, applejack and other dis-
tilled versions of apple cider. Heat is
used to start the fermentation process
for hard cider, and propane is the ideal
energy for this processing. Hard cider
and related products have a cult fol-
lowing that is growing fast.
Make sure you add your propane
energy to this growth.
Here are a few tips on how to sell
more propane gallons into the local
adult beverage business.

Call on wineries, distillers, mi-


crobreweries and cider mills in your
area. Become their energy consultant
and help them smooth out their opera-
tion with propane and related equip-
ment. A dependable and abundant
supply of hot water is generally their
biggest challenge, but there are other
opportunities as well.

Look for new locations being


built in your marketing area. A good
place to start is with local building
permits or your states licensing divi-
sion for these types of businesses.
Contact the business owners and be-
come their energy consultant.

Join state and local grape grow-


ers associations, brewers guilds and
other groups related to the production
and promotion of locally made adult
beverages. Attend their meetings and
trade shows and network with the
business owners. Become their energy
consultant.

Buy, sample and enjoy local


wines, beer, spirits and cider. It can be
a fun way to meet your next propane
customer. LPG
Tom Jaenicke is the owner and principal
adviser at ATomiK Creative Solutions
LLC, a company that provides market-
ing services, technical advice, continuing
education solutions and business devel-
opment assistance to energy companies
and support organizations. He can be
reached at tom@atomikenergysolutions.
com or 810-252-7855.
Adult beverage boom
Propane use on rise in local beer, wine and spirits industry
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LPGas October 2013 www.LPGasmagazine.com
Y
our goal is to sell more fuel. The
on-road vehicle market has plen-
ty of long-term growth opportu-
nities to help you do just that.
Did you know that fueling just one
school bus equates to an average pro-
pane load for five residential homes per
year combined?
The 2013 Propane Market Outlook
by ICF International predicts an-
nual sales of 27,000 on-road vehicles
next year and more than 40,000 by
2020. This report also forecasts that
propane consumption for on-road ve-
hicles will increase by more than 400
million gallons by 2020.
Here are a few things to consider
to help you increase propane autogas
sales.
Know the fuel system manufac-
turers. Do you know which technology
companies offer propane autogas fuel
systems and for which vehicle manu-
facturers those systems are designed?
Which ones are U.S. Environmental
Protection Agency and California Air
Resources Board certified? Find a com-
plete listing of all certified fuel systems
and vehicle platforms on the Propane
Education & Research Councils
(PERC) website, www.autogasusa.org.
Also, look into original equipment
manufacturers offerings to see avail-
able gaseous fuel options. For instance,
Ford offers a full line of commercial ve-
hicles equipped with engines prepped
from the factory to successfully run
on gaseous fuels. Plus, the factory war-
ranty coverage on the vehicle is main-
tained once a Ford qualified vehicle
modifier converts it.
Since all vehicles need maintenance,
make sure the fuel system provided has
a robust service network in place. Visit
a local dealership and offer your knowl-
edge and support. Theyll think of you
the next time a customer asks about a
propane retailer.
Partner with fuel system manu-
facturers. Fuel system manufacturers
are constantly talking to potential cus-
tomers about their refueling needs as
well as their vehicle purchases. Estab-
lish a relationship with these compa-
nies to learn what they can offer to your
customers.
By maintaining a good working re-
lationship, you will have access to sales
training, marketing materials and ad-
ditional support to help diversify your
own companys sales efforts.
If you make introductions to cus-
tomer prospects, manufacturers will be
more likely to do the same for you.
Targeting your customers. Tap
into your existing client base. A local
company that uses propane for its fork-
lifts also operates trucks. What about
the residential customer who owns a
contracting business?
Look to the public and private sec-
tors that run commercial vehicles
paratransit and airport transportation,
to name a couple. Light- and medium-
duty trucks, vans and shuttles are avail-
able through fuel system manufactur-
ers, upfitters and dealerships.
School districts are another bur-
geoning market. Sales for the Blue Bird
propane-powered Vision have tripled
compared to the same six-month pe-
riod as last year. Talk to district fleet
managers about their current school
bus manufacturer or contractor and
explain the benefits of propane autogas.
With more than 480,000 school buses
nationwide, think about the potential
economic impact over the next decade
as these conventionally fueled buses
are replaced with propane autogas-
powered buses.
And, keep in mind that this market
is not limited to yellow school buses,
but also includes all other vehicles
besides buses in a districts white fleet.
Explain available federal and local
incentives they could receive by pur-
chasing alternative fuels like propane
autogas. Then, put them in touch with a
trusted fuel system manufacturer.
For additional sources, many fuel
system manufacturers have case studies
showcasing successful and happy cus-
tomers. PERC also has studies showcas-
ing successful propane autogas fleet
deployments. Local Clean Cities can
direct you to existing success stories in
your area.
At a PERC meeting last year, an
energy expert on market trends said,
If you are a propane company and you
choose not to embrace propane auto-
gas, you might be out of business in a
few years.
This market is growing, and so can
your sales of autogas. LPG
Todd Mouw is the vice president of sales
and marketing for Roush CleanTech.
Contact him at todd.mouw@roush.com
or 800-59-ROUSH.
Increase your autogas sales
A little knowledge of the available resources can go a long way
GUEST COLUMNIST
|
TODD MOUW
Dont forget school districts
have other vehicles that
propane autogas can power.
www.LPGasmagazine.com October 2013 LPGas
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47
R
emote monitoring of
propane tank levels is a
practice that is growing
in usage across the coun-
try because it has the potential
to save significant costs for pro-
pane retailers and operators.
Traditionally, propane tank
levels have been estimated
using degree-day calculations
to forecast usage, but this pro-
cess works smoothly only as long as
the calculation assumptions prove to
be true. When they dont, a retailer
is prone to making costly nuisance
trips to top off a mostly-full tank or
unscheduled emergency trips to fill a
tank that has gone completely empty.
In high-use situations, when the
cost of running out of gas is high,
some suppliers drive to the tank once
or twice a day to check fuel level. The
problem is made worse when the tank
is located many miles away, possibly in
a location that is difficult to access.
The only way to ensure that refills
are made when convenient and a sig-
nificant amount of gas is delivered is
to accurately measure the contents and
view the information remotely.
There are three basic types of re-
mote tank level-monitoring technolo-
gies available today: gauge readers,
ultrasonic sensors and radar devices.
For the end user, they differ in reliabil-
ity, cost and ease of installation.
Gauge readers are easiest to install
because they plug into the gauge hard-
ware, which works with a mechanical
float typically already present in the
tank. A remote ready gauge face is
necessary for this and can be easily ac-
quired if it does not currently exist on
the tank. Anyone can install a gauge
reader without special training. If
the propane tank doesnt have a float
mechanism already present, then its
a different story, and it will need to be
decommissioned for float gauge hard-
ware installation.
At the other end of the cost spec-
trum are radar level-sensing systems.
A mechanical float is not required, but
to install a radar-sensing system you
still need to decommission the tank so
the radar electronics can be installed
inside. Theres a lot of cost to this, plus
lots of cost in the equipment itself.
The third alternative is an ultra-
sonic measurement system. With ul-
trasonic, there is no need for any tank
modifications. An ultrasonic sensor
is applied externally to the bottom of
the tank. The sensor sends an ultra-
sonic signal through the tank wall and
through the liquid. The signal bounces
off the surface of the liquid and the
time of flight back to the sensor is
measured. Software takes this infor-
mation and factors in the dimensions
of the tank and temperature to
calculate the precise amount of
propane in the tank.
Neither radar nor ultrasonic
monitoring systems employ
any moving parts, and hence
they are not prone to the stick-
ing problems that can affect
float gauges. And because they
employ precise electronic sen-
sors, radar and ultrasonic tech-
nologies are highly accurate some
providing readings that are accurate
to +/-1 percent (the typical float gauge
may be accurate to only +/-10 percent,
when the float is not sticking). Elec-
tronic readings are also more repeat-
able than gauge readings, whereas
floats can respond differently from
tank fill to tank fill.
Different companies have differ-
ent ways of accessing the remote info.
Some use telephone landlines. Others
use cell phone connections. Still others
use satellite transceivers.
The best solution for truly all tanks
is to use satellite communications, as
cellular phone coverage is still lim-
ited by geographical location. And
with cellular, the remote-monitoring
system installer doesnt know until
he or she gets to the site whether it
will work or not. The cost of satellite-
based communication is now on par
with charges for cellular or landline
transmission, plus it provides a signal
no matter where the tank is located
and no matter what time of day, even
through tree canopies. LPG
Chris Job is the Xact product manager
at Schmitt Industries. Contact him at
cjob@schmitt-ind.com or 503-595-4277.
Cost, accuracy trade-offs
Weighing pluses, minuses of remote tank monitoring technology choices
GUEST COLUMNIST
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CHRIS JOB
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There are three basic types of
remote tank level-monitoring
technologies available today.
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Fixed gas monitor
Oldhams iTrans 2 fixed gas monitor for the detec-
tion of explosive gases, toxic gases or oxygen
employs an electronics platform to provide one or
two points of detection
from a single head.
When in RS485
bus configura-
tion, one iTrans
2 system is
capable of
accommodating
more than 200 trans-
mitters. Also, one
system can monitor
any combination of
gases for a specific envi-
ronment, the company
says. iTrans2 includes
automatic sensor recogni-
tion, an access security
code, programmable relays
and an explosion-proof alu-
minum or stainless steel housing.
For more information, visit www.oldhamgas.com.
Pumps and compressors
Blackmers LGL Series sliding vane pumps were designed
for use in LP gas and propane autogas applications.
According to Blackmer, the pumps feature a unique cavi-
tation-suppression liner that helps reduce the noise, vibra-
tion and wear entrained vapors can cause. The pumps also
feature ductile-iron construction and internal relief valves,
which provide self-priming and dry-run capabilities. In addi-
tion, Blackmers LB Series reciprocating gas compressors
achieve transfer rates of 132 to 2,630 gallons per minute,
according to the company. LB Series compressors can han-
dle the transfer and recovery of liquefied gases. All models
feature ductile-iron pressure parts for optimized resistance
to thermal and mechanical shock. One other Blackmer-
related development is the release of its updated Bulletin
501-001 document, which is available in English, French,
Russian, Spanish and Mandarin. The document is designed
to provide information about the companys positive dis-
placement pumps and oil-free reciprocating compressors
for LP gas applications.
For more information, visit www.psgdover.com/blackmer.
Portable gas detector
Crowcons Gas-Pro portable gas detector has several features
specific to confined-space-entry work. Its bright, clear top-
mount display can be read at a glance without having to touch
the detector. In alarm conditions, the Gas-Pros dual-color back-
light adds an extra level of alert. A 95-decibel alarm, vibration
and dual-color visual
warnings are standard.
An automated pre-
entry check function
walks users through a
confined-space entry
to ensure maximum
safety. In addition, a
tri-color indicator gives
the status of a gas test,
calibration and recent
alarm notifications at a
glance. Users can select
multiple gas sensors for
up to five potentially
hazardous gases from a
wide range.
For more information,
visit www.crowcon.com.
www.LPGasmagazine.com October 2013 LPGas
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NEW PRODUCTS
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Online bill-paying system
Bend Mailing Services says its job-submission process
integrates seamlessly with a propane retailers commercial
or in-house designed software. The company provides
paper and paperless
customer invoicing
systems with no
setup, design fees
or add-on modules.
Color statements,
ongoing IT and
customer support
representative
assistance, as well
as upgrades and
design revisions,
are part of the pro-
cess. In addition,
an extensive online
tracking system
allows a retailers staff to monitor invoicing jobs, as well as
archive, print and email exact PDF copies of invoices imme-
diately to customers. Bend Mailing Services will custom
design www.online-billpay.com with a retailers branding
made accessible from a payment link on a retailers website.
For more information, visit www.bendmailing.com. Tank-monitoring device
The GasCheck device from Moscap Engineering is an
ultrasonic device that measures the liquid level of a propane
cylinder in seconds. The device is about the size of a pen,
and it uses electronic signals to accurately determine the
liquid levels in the propane tank. To operate, the rubber-
ized tip of the device is pressed against the outer wall of the
tank at a 90-degree angle. A red light signifies no liquid at
that level, while a green light indicates gas is present at that
level. Two watch batteries power GasCheck, which can be
used in conjunction with flammable gases. Its readings are
consistent regardless of external temperatures or weather
conditions, the company says.
For more information, visit www.moscapeng.com.
Cylinder
transporter
TankUp reusable
cylinder transporters
offer a safe, simple
way for consumers to
take 20-pound cyl-
inders home in their
vehicles. According
to Propane
Cylinder Products,
TankUp stores in an
exchange cabinet.
Its thickness of 3/16
inches adds up to a
five-piece horizontal
stack measuring 1
inch. In addition, the
company says its pop-up arm
design allows consumers to easily
use the cylinder upon returning home. Each TankUp trans-
porter weighs 7 ounces.
For more information, visit www.procylinder.com.
Hand-crank static discharge reel
Reelcraft expanded its line of industrial-duty static dis-
charge reels to include the manual-rewind GHC3100 N.
According to the company, this reel retracts and stores up
to 100 feet of orange nylon-jacketed cable. When properly
clamped to a ground, the static discharge reel dissipates
static electrical buildup, reducing the chances of sparking
and the potential for explosion. Reelcraft recommends
the GHC3100 N for applications in which explosions are
prevalent as a result of static buildup, such as refueling or
defueling.
For more information, visit www.reelcraft.com.
NEW PRODUCTS
Second-stage
regulator
Cavagna Groups
Kosan Plus Guardian, a
second-stage regulator,
does not require a separate dielectric
union because the unit is already integrated in
the flange of the regulator. The dielectric flange is
intended to isolate metallic piping from sources of electri-
cal power, the company says. When the flange is assem-
bled on the regulator, the electric insulation between the
upstream part of the installation and the downstream part
of the installation is obtained.
For more information, visit www.cavagnagroup.com.
www.LPGasmagazine.com October 2013 LPGas
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51
Composite
cylinders
Hexagon Ragascos Viking
Cylinders are available in mul-
tiple sizes for both lifestyle
and commercial applications.
According to the company,
Viking Cylinders are more than
50 percent lighter than a steel
propane tank. Also, the use of composite material makes
the cylinders translucent, giving users the ability to see
the liquid propane level.
For more information, visit www.
vikingcylinders.com.
Residential regulators
Bergquist Inc. showcased Marshall Excelsior Co.s new Excela-Flo residential regulators
at its annual open house in Toledo, Ohio. According to a press release, the regulators
have several key features to optimize performance and installation, including a round
flange for evenly distributed diaphragm compression; large wrench flats; stainless
steel lever design; and a tear-off data label for recordkeeping.
For more information, visit www.marshallexcelsior.com.
What sets ACME apart from the competition?
Itsourpeople.
Our technicians have more then 90-years
combined automotive & Autogas fuel system
experience & will exceed all your expectations in
customer service. Call us today 507-345-4000.
Friend us on FACEBOOK for the most up-to-
date info & visit us on our new totally redesigned
website with e-commerce www.acmecarb.com.
,nVtDIIing EPA-CHUtiHd VyVtHPV:
ACME Alternate Fuel
Systems, Inc.
Propane Autogas fuel systems pioneer for more than 55 years!
P4-Series LPG Dispensers
The new standard in Electronic
Retail LPG Dispensers. Give your
LPG fueling station the image,
efficiency and flexibility it deserves!
No other dispenser line gives you
more flexibility at a better price!
Call today and see how Parafour
can help grow your business.
www.parafour.com
512-686-6908 t 512-746-1027
Available from the following Distributors:
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CLASSIFIED ADVERTISING
All ads must be prepaid by the classied closing date. Visa, Mastercard, & American
Express orders are accepted over the phone. Please send you ad copy with prepay-
ment to the following address: LP/Gas, Attn: Kelli Velasquez, 1360 E. 9th St., Ste. 1070,
Cleveland, OH 44114.
CONTACT SALES EXECUTIVE KELLI VELASQUEZ FOR RATES TODAY!
Direct Dial: 216-706-3767 Email: kvelasquez@northcoastmedia.net
Fax: 253-484-3080
Mail: LPG MAGAZINE / BLIND BOX #
CLEVELAND, OH 44114
Email: CANDERSON@NORTHCOASTMEDIA.NET
Please specify magazine name and blind
box number in your correspondence.
FOR SALE
Visit us at www.LPGasmagazine.com
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FOR SALE (contd)
Advertiser here to Generate sales leads, maintain market presence, conduct market testing, promote existing lines, introduce new products and services, or recruit the best.
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IMPACT Command immediate attention and get fast action with the dynamics of classied advertising
FOR SALE (contd)
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FOR SALE (contd)
2010 FRT M2 260 HP 8.3 Cumm 3560p Auto
3000 gal LCR Meter 3-func base di ff l ock
PW&L ai r control s on S chai ns 53K mi l es 573-
547-5658 or 573-517-1561 cel l 10/13
BUSINESS SERVICES
For Sal e: 2012 11,500 Gal l on Westmor
Prol i ner LP transport, ai r ri de, super
si ngl es, ABS wi th rol l protecti on, hydraul i c
pump 715-651-0863. 10/13
For Sal e: 12,000 gal l on capaci ty propane
storage tank on ski ds. Yr 1961. Length
i ncl ski d 48.5 ft. Di ameter 84, Rated to
250 psi . 573 Shel l thi ckness, .348 head
thi ckness. Aski ng $24,000. Located NE
Col orado. Cal l 303-637-7873. emai l :
i nfo@envi rogas.bi z 10/13
Contact Kel l i Vel asquez today and pl ace
your ad i n the next avai l abl e i ssue of LP Gas
magazi ne. 216-706-3767. kvel asquez@
northcoastmedi a.net 10/13
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LPGas October 2013 www.LPGasmagazine.com
To place your
classied ad, call
Kelli Velasquez
(216) 706-3767
CAREER OPPORTUNITIES
Reach Thousands of Industry Experts by placing your ad in LP Gas Magazines Classifed Showcase.
BUSINESS SERVICES (contd)
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The Benefts Of
CLASSIFIED ADVERTISING
IMPACT - Command immediate
attention and get fast action with the
dynamics of classifed advertising!
EXPOSURE - Reach highly-targeted,
market-specifc business professionals,
industry experts and prospects.
VALUE - Select from a variety of classifed
display options to meet specifc needs on a
timely basis cost-effectively.
RESULTS - Generate sales leads,
maintain market presence, conduct market
testing, promote existing lines, introduce
new products and services, or recruit the
best bottom-line, classifeds offer you
an excellent return on investment!
For Rates and Schedules, Contact:
Kelli Velasquez
216.706.3767
kvelasquez@northcoastmedia.net
www.LPGasmagazine.com
Place your recruitment ad today.
Find the person for the job.
EQUIPMENT FOR SALE
FUEL DELIVERY FORMS
SOFTWARE
CAREER OPPORTUNITIES (contd)
TERRITORY SALESPERSON - Whol esal e
Di stri butor l ooki ng for an equi pment and
appl i ance sal es person for the Al abama/
Mi ssi ssi ppi area. The i deal candi date
wi l l have a strong sal es background,
experi ence wi thi n the propane i ndustry, be
ambi ti ous and sel f moti vated. Duties &
Responsibilities: Devel op a Growth Acti on
Pl an for Assi gned Terri tory; Travel throughout
assi gned terri tory to cal l on regul ar and
prospecti ve customers; Trai n deal ers & thei r
empl oyees on how to use, sel l , and i nstal l
the products we di stri bute. Adequate
worki ng knowl edge of Mi crosoft Offi ce
Sui te Requi red. Pl ease forward resume to:
propanedi stri butor@gmai l .com 10/13
TECHNICAL PRODUCT SPECIALIST -
North Carol i na Whol esal e Equi pment
Di stri butor l ooki ng for a CSR who wi l l
speci al i ze i n handl i ng i ncomi ng customer
cal l s and i nqui ri es that are techni cal and
detai l ed i n nature. The i deal candi date
wi l l : Have extensi ve experi ence wi thi n
the propane i ndustry, Be a qui ck l earner,
organi zed, detai l ori ented, abl e to mul ti -
task, abl e to troubl e shoot probl ems,
have excel l ent customer servi ce ski l l s and
thorough knowl edge of Mi crosoft Offi ce
Sui te. Rel ocati on wi thi n North Carol i na
may be requi red. Pl ease forward resume to:
Propanedi stri butor@gmai l .com 10/13
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SOFTWARE (contd)
Place your ad in LP Gas Classifeds and see it online too!
Next Issue: December 2013 Ad Close Date: November 7, 2013
Contact Kelli Velasquez
216.706.3767
kvelasquez@northcoastmedia.net
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United States Postal Service
Statement of Ownership, Management, and Circulation
(Requester Publications Only)
Required by 39 USC 3685
1. Publication Title: LP Gas
2. Publication Number: 0024-7103
3. Filing Date: 9/23/2013
4. Issue of Frequency: Monthly
5. Number of Issues Published Annually: 12
6. Annual Subscription Price: Free to Qualifed
7. Complete Mailing Address of Known Ofce of Publication (Not Printer): North Coast Media LLC,
1360 E. Ninth St., Suite 1070, Cleveland, OH 44114 Contact Person: Antoinette Sanchez-Perkins
Telephone: 216-706-3750
8. Complete Mailing Address of Headquarters or General Business Ofce of Publisher (Not Printer): North
Coast Media LLC, 1360 E. Ninth St., Suite 1070, Cleveland, OH 44114
9. Full Names and Complete Mailing Addresses of Publisher, Editor, and Managing Editor - Publisher: Brian
Kanaba, North Coast Media LLC, 1360 East Ninth St., Suite 1070, Cleveland, OH 44114; Editor-in-
Chief: Brian Richesson, North Coast Media LLC, 1360 East Ninth St., Suite 1070, Cleveland, OH 44114;
Managing Editor: Kevin Yanik, North Coast Media LLC, 1360 East Ninth St., Suite 1070, Cleveland, OH
44114
10. Owner - Full name: North Coast Media LLC, 1360 E. Ninth St., Suite 1070, Cleveland, OH 44114
11 Known Bondholders, Mortgagees, and Other Security Holders Owning or Holding 1 Percent or More of Total
Amount of Bonds, Mortgages or Other Securities:
12. Does not apply
13. Publication Title: LP Gas
14. Issue Date for Circulation Data: August 2013 Average No. Copies No. Copies of Single Issue
Each Issue During Published Nearest to
Preceding 12 Months Filing Date
15. Extent and Nature of Circulation
a. Total Number of Copies (Net press run) 12,250 12,251
b. Legitimate Paid and/ or Requested Distribution
(By Mail and Outside the Mail)
(1) Outside County Paid/Requested Mail Subscriptions
stated on PS Form 3541. (Include direct written request
from recipient, telemarketing and Internet requests
from recipient, paid subscriptions including nominal
rate subscriptions, employer requests, advertisers proof
copies, and exchange copies.) 8,872 8,982
(2) In-County Paid/Requested Mail Subscriptions stated
on PS Form 3541. (Include direct written request from
recipient, telemarketing and Internet requests from
recipient, paid subscriptions including nominal
rate subscriptions, employer requests, advertisers proof
copies, and exchange copies.) 0 0
(3) Sales Through Dealers and Carriers, Street Vendors,
Counter Sales, and Other Paid or Requested Distribution
Outside USPS 56 55
(4) Requested Copies Distributed by Other Mail Classes
Through the USPS (e.g. First-Class Mail) 0 0
c. Total Paid and/or Requested Circulation 8,928 9,037
d. Nonrequested Distribution (By Mail and Outside the Mail)
(1) Outside County Nonrequested Copies Stated on
PS Form 3541 (include Sample copies, Requests Over
3 years old, Requests induced by a Premium, Bulk Sales
and Requests including Association Requests, Names
obtained from Business Directories, Lists, and other sources) 3,042 3,066
(2) In-County Nonrequested Copies Stated on
PS Form 3541 (include Sample copies, Requests Over
3 years old, Requests induced by a Premium, Bulk Sales
and Requests including Association Requests, Names
obtained from Business Directories, Lists, and other sources) 0 0
(3) Nonrequested Copies Distributed Through the USPS
by Other Classes of Mail (e.g. First-Class Mail, Nonrequestor
Copies mailed in excess of 10% Limit mailed at Standard Mail
or Package Services Rates) 0 0
(4) Nonrequested Copies Distributed Outside the Mail
(Include Pickup Stands, Trade Shows, Showrooms and
Other Sources) 275 143
e. Total Nonrequested Distribution (Sum of 15d (1), (2), (3) (4)) 3,317 3,209
f. Total Distribution (Sum of 15c and 15e) 12,245 12,246
g. Copies not Distributed 5 5
h. Total (Sum of 15f and g) 12,250 12,251
i. Percent Paid and/or Requested Circulation
(15c divided by 15f times 100) 72.9% 73.8%
16. Total circulation includes electronic copies.
Report circulation on PS Form 3526-X worksheet.
17. Publication of Statement of Ownership for a Requester
Publication is required and will be printed in the October 2013
issue of this publication.
18. Signature and Title of Editor, Publisher, Business Manager, or Owner Date: 9/23/2013
Antoinette Sanchez-Perkins, Senior Audience Development Manager
I certify that all information furnished on this form is true and complete. I understand that anyone who
furnishes false or misleading information on this form or who omits material or information requested on the
form may be subject to criminal sanction
COMPANIES TO WATCH
60
|
LPGas October 2013 www.LPGasmagazine.com
Independence Propane
Pennsylvanian takes propane experiences and forms own company
BY KEVIN YANIK
|
MANAGING EDITOR
kyanik@northcoastmedia.net
S
uburban Propane. Heritage Pro-
pane. AmeriGas.
Few people less than 40 years
old, if any, have worked for three
MLPs like Mark Delehanty has. Dele-
hanty, 37, also has five years experience
with family-owned Trexler-Haines.
Now, hes onto his next endeavor, hav-
ing founded his own propane company,
Independence Propane, in June 2012 in
Green Lane, Pa.
Its an exciting time, Delehanty
says. Compared to what Ive done
in the past, there were exciting times
then and there were times that were
very stressful and disheartening. Ive
taken everything Ive learned from all
those jobs and tried to apply it to what
Im doing now.
Delehanty started Independence
Propane with the help of family and
friends who invested in his business.
Delehantys wife, Cindy, is another
contributor who helps with finances
and paperwork.
But Delehanty is very much a one-
man act setting tanks, delivering fuel
and attracting new customers anytime
he can.
The biggest challenge is getting
people to know who we are, Delehanty
says. What Ive found is if I get a phone
call, nine times out of 10 I get the cus-
tomer. Its rare that we lose a sale weve
been given a shot to get. The real chal-
lenge is getting the phone to ring.
Heating, ventilation and air-condi-
tioning (HVAC) companies have been
helpful providing Delehanty customer
leads.
Ive got several HVAC companies
that refer their work to me for pro-
pane, he says. There is a lot of fuel
oil-to-gas conversions taking place in
our area.
Fourteen months after launching
Independence Propane, Delehantys
customer base is up to 180. His goal
over the next 12 months is to double
that number and up his annual gallons
sold to 250,000.
Delehanty sees the propane autogas
and mower markets as opportunities
to increase his gallons, but hes also
intent on installing more tanks before
making a bigger investment in other
propane markets.
If were going to go into the fuel for
the commercial mowing business, that
means Im not doing tanks; not doing
deliveries; not doing billing. That
means I have to go out and do sales and
marketing. Thats time, and a lot of it.
Ive got to get over the hurdle of
transitioning from being the every-
thing guy. Weve got to get bigger so
we can hire some people, as opposed to
setting tanks and doing deliveries.
Besides family and friends, another
partner that helped Independence
Propane launch is wholesaler AMERI-
green Energy.
Theyve evolved a philosophy of
helping the propane retailer, Dele-
hanty says. Their marketing depart-
ment is not only for them, but they
allow their customers to utilize their
marketing department. They helped
me out with [my] website. They also
have a rewards program where my
customers can go for coupons and
other things. LPG
OWNER: One of Mark Delehantys
goals is to double his gallon sales
by this time next year.
LOCATION: Green Lane, Pa.
FOUNDED: 2012
EMPLOYEES: 2
PROPANE SALES: 130,000 gallons
ONLINE: www.ipropane.net
If you feel the time is right to sell your business, consider calling
Suburban Propane. With over 80 years of experience in the
propane industry, you can trust us to see the process through
with the highest level of efciency and integrity:
Youll receive a purchase plan thats clear, exible,
and promptly executed
Your employees will be respected for their years of service,
their knowledge of your customers and the foundation you
and your employees have put in place to service those
customers over the years.
Your valued customers will receive exceptional service
during and after the transition
For a condential consultation call Mark Wienberg, Vice President
Operational Support & Analysis at 973-503-9628.
Thinking
of selling?
Talk to us. With our long history
of customer satisfaction,
youll rest easy about the transition.
Ever since the beginnings of the propane
industry, marketers have
always been able to depend on
original RegO valves and regulators
for dependable performance
and reliability.
Products that are still

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