WILMINGTON, Mass., Nov. 28, 2011 /PRNewswire/ -- UniFirst, a provider of rental work apparel and cleanliness facility products to companies throughout the U.S. and Canada, has announced it will begin testing the use of electric-powered vans from Navistar for its customer deliveries.
The Navistar eStar vans, which produce zero emissions, will be used to serve UniFirst customers in Stratford, CT and Chicago, IL, according to Adam Soreff, Director of Communications at UniFirst. "In recent years, we've incorporated a wide range of environmentally friendly practices inside the walls of our laundering and servicing operations, and now we're looking to expand our 'greener' business practices outside of them."
Soreff said Stratford and Chicago were selected for testing because "such densely populated areas with their many thousands of cars and trucks offer us the biggest opportunity to make real and significant reductions in carbon emissions and pollution."
Designed by Navistar, a green vehicles design specialist, the eStar vans can handle a 4000 pound load and go for up to 100 miles on a single charge. "The vans can be fully recharged in eight hours," says Mark Aubry, Vice President of Sales and Marketing for Electric Vehicles at Navistar. "That means our electric vans can be plugged in overnight and be ready to go the first thing in the morning."
Unlike other electric vans that are reconfigured models of fossil-fuel trucks, the eStar van has been purpose-built for electric power and operational safety, Aubry says. "The vans feature a deep, wrap-around front window, as well as a backup camera and mirrors to allow drivers a commanding view of their entire surroundings. Our goal has been to make our electric vans both the greenest and safest ones on the road today."
As a member of the U.S. Green Building Council and the Canada Green Building Council, Soreff says UniFirst is continually searching out environmentally conscious solutions to benefit its customers and the environment. "This latest effort literally demonstrates we are driven to be 'green' well beyond just the color of our logo."
UniFirst (NYSE: UNF), a North American leader in the supply and servicing of uniforms, workwear, and protective clothing, outfits more than 1.5 million workers each business day. UniFirst also offers Facility Service programs including floor mats, mops, and restroom products. For more information, contact UniFirst at 800-455-7654 or visit www.unifirst.com.