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Thursday, 17 October 1985
Page: 1490

(Question No. 493)

Senator Maguire asked the Minister representing the Minister for Local Government and Administrative Services, upon notice, on 23 August 1985:

(1) Do any vehicles in the Commonwealth car fleet currently use Liquefied Petroleum (LP) gas for fuel; if so, what proportion of the Commonwealth car fleet operates on LP gas.

(2) Will the Government convert Commonwealth cars currently using petrol to LP gas.

(3) Would the running costs of the overall fleet be reduced by conversions to LP gas; if so, by how much.

Senator Gietzelt —The Minister for Local Government and Administrative Services has provided the following answer to the honourable senator's question:

(1) The Department of Local Government and Administrative Services operates a fleet of some 8,300 passenger vehicles and of these 114 use LP gas as a fuel.

(2) There are no plans to convert Department of Local Government and Administrative Services vehicles, currently using petrol, to LP gas.

(3) Some savings in running costs for the overall fleet could be achieved depending upon the cost of conversion, the expected economic life of the vehicle, its location and the relative cost of fuel and LP gas. A recent analysis has indicated that high kilometerage (over 50,000 kms per annum for a medium size 4 cylinder sedan) is necessary to recover conversion costs.

Whilst some chauffeur driven pool vehicles and some Australian Federal Police pursuit and patrol vehicles cover the required high kilometerage, LP gas conversions have not proceeded for several operational reasons, including loss of space and reduction in engine performance.