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Drivers of hybrid fuel taxis in San Francisco are pocketing $9,000 a year in fuel savings, thanks to Paul Gillespie, says Hybrid Cars. If you've wondered how long a hybrid battery would last in real road conditions, they don't get much more of a beating than they'll find on the hilly streets of San Francisco where all but two of the hybrid fleet have logged nearly 300,000 miles without a battery issue since they hit the road in 2003.
"Ford never really intended this vehicle to be used as a taxi," Gillespie said as he tooled around the city's hilly Pacific Heights neighborhood in the silent hybrid. "We adopted it because I was desperate to find a vehicle that would save drivers fuel costs and save greenhouse gas emissions."
According to the Los Angeles Times in San Francisco's hybrid taxis prove their worth, fourteen percent, or approximately 200 of San Francisco's 1,438 taxis are hybrids. They're saving drivers money, helping keep San Francisco's skies blue, lessening the amount of traffic-caused pollution that blows to the East Bay, and giving us all a quieter ride.
For his persistence in advocating the adoption of hybrids into the San Francisco taxi fleet; for proving their value; and for starting where he lives and works to improve one relatively small, but potentially globally significant, fossil-fuel sucking, climate-changing problem, the Ordinary Heroes award this week is kindly offered to Paul Gillespie.