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District 31 Transportation Coordinator Greg Liedl, holding a jar of biodiesel, and Fleet Manager Jeff Baltzell discuss the multiple problems they face keeping 78 school buses running when they face extreme cold conditions. Problems are expected to escalate in 2015 as the biodiesel percentage increases. Monte Draper | Bemidji Pioneer

Buses battle bitter cold

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BEMIDJI — The day after Christmas break, Greg Liedl got a most-unwelcome gift: a frozen tank.

Liedl, the transportation coordinator for Bemidji Area Schools, was weighing whether he believed class could be held that day as scheduled when he was told an electric heater in one of his buses had failed, thus allowing the diesel exhaust fluid, or DEF, to freeze up.

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