Each weekday, five employees make a 140-mile commute in a Tesla Model X SUV, the first all-electric vehicle in OC Vanpool, OCTA’s vanpool program. The employees work in Seal Beach at the Naval Weapons Station and commute from near Murrieta in southern Riverside County.
The introduction of the first all-electric vehicle is an important step toward OCTA’s goal of providing a balanced and sustainable transportation system for Orange County, which includes vehicles that release zero emissions into the environment.
The Tesla X is provided by Green Commuter, one of three vanpool companies contracted by OCTA to provide vehicles to commuters in Orange County to help them share the ride as they travel to work.
“I greatly appreciate these essential employees from Seal Beach who come to work each day to serve our community. Their participation in OC Vanpool helps take more cars off the road and protects the environment in the process,” said OCTA Chairman Steve Jones, also the Mayor of Garden Grove.
OC Vanpool currently has 164 active vehicles. Most are powered by gas though more electric vehicles are expected to be added.
Prior to the coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic, there were approximately 470 operating vanpools. Many employees began working remotely during the pandemic.
Still, many essential workers at major Orange County employers such as the UCI Medical Center, Quest Diagnostic and Children’s Hospital of Orange County (CHOC) continue to operate vanpools.
OCTA helps cover approximately 25 percent of the cost of operating the vanpools each month. This program helps large companies provide an important benefit to employees, reduce parking needs, and meet regional air-quality requirements.
For more information about OC Vanpool, visit here.