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Daily industrial news and top headlines for plant and maintenance managers

Was Neglect To Blame For Gas Pipeline Explosion?

September 22, 2010 12:01 pm | Videos | Comments

By now, we've all heard about the tragedy in San Bruno, CA, where a large natural gas pipeline exploded. Seven have died, and dozens of homes were damaged, some irreparably. Recently, a number of people have come out and accused the pipeline's owner, PG&E, of neglecting regular maintenance. Was there more the utility company could have done to prevent the explosion? If you're having trouble watching this video, try downloading the latest version of Flash Player or contacting your IT department.

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Boeing Soars Into Private Space Industry

September 22, 2010 11:59 am | Videos | Comments

Boeing has decided to throw their multi-billion and international hat into the private space travel market with a number of R&D efforts, and it’s bound to make a few of the smaller companies quiver in their boots, or booster rockets. While experts say Boeing's efforts could be available come 2015, we know that actually means more like 2018 or 2019.

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Locals Blame Oil For Massive Gulf Fish Kill

September 22, 2010 11:57 am | Videos | Comments

Countless Gulf fish were found dead in a Louisiana bayou, and locals fear oil is to blame. While more testing is required to confirm the cause of death, it's entirely plausible that an underwater oil plume could cause this sort of environmental damage. If you're having trouble watching this video, try downloading the latest version of Flash Player or contacting your IT department.

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Cessna To Cut Another 700 Jobs In 2010

September 22, 2010 5:05 am | by Roxana Hegemana, Associated Press Writer | News | Comments

WICHITA, Kan. (AP) — Cessna Aircraft announced Tuesday it will cut another 700 jobs, saying it has not seen the growth and recovery that it expected this year. Cessna CEO Jack Pelton told workers in an e-mail that the company's performance mirrored the "lackluster economy." "While cancellations have slowed, the recovery and growth we expected to see throughout the year have not materialized, and the timing of any recovery remains uncertain," Pelton wrote.

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R&D Is A Company's Lifeblood

September 22, 2010 5:00 am | Articles | Comments

Michelle Brand, business director of DSM Somos, a global materials supplier that provides the stereolithography resins used in 3D models and prototypes recently spoke with Production Design & Development, IMPO’s sister publication, and discussed what she felt is a company’s life-blood, and how the “almighty drive to keep cost down creates an end-state detrimental to humanity.

Congressman: Did J&J Lie About Its 'Phantom Recall'?

September 22, 2010 4:59 am | by Matthew Perrone, AP health Writer | News | Comments

WASHINGTON (AP) — Scrutiny of drug and consumer product giant Johnson & Johnson ratcheted up Tuesday as a congressional chairman demanded the company provide proof of its claim that federal regulators cleared a plan to secretly buy up defective painkillers. The letter from Rep. Edolphus "Ed" Towns, D-N.

'Horrified' Egg Exec Apologizes For Salmonella Outbreak

September 22, 2010 4:53 am | by Mary Clare Jalonick, Associated Press Writer | News | Comments

WASHINGTON (AP) — The owner of an Iowa egg company says in testimony prepared for a House hearing that he was "horrified" to learn that his eggs may have sickened as many as 1,600 people in an outbreak of salmonella poisoning this summer. Austin "Jack" DeCoster and his son, Peter DeCoster, are scheduled to testify before a House Energy and Commerce subcommittee Wednesday.

OSHA: Spartech 'Inviting Tragedy' With Safety Violations

September 22, 2010 4:51 am | News | Comments

EVANSTON, Ill. (AP) — Federal authorities have cited an Evanston plastics company that they say endangered employees through 16 serious safety violations. The action against Spartech Plastics LLC comes from the Occupational Safety and Health Administration. OSHA says the company exposed workers to unguarded machinery and electrocution and amputation hazards.

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600 N.C. Jobs Saved Through Federal Stimulus Loan

September 22, 2010 4:49 am | by Johnny Whitfield, Associated Press Writer | News | Comments

WENDELL, N.C. (AP) — More than 600 people in Nash, Johnston and eastern Wake counties still have jobs because of provisions in a federal stimulus package that loosened underwriting rules for loans to companies in rural areas. Mortex, headquartered in Wendell, makes sportswear from raw materials and sells them under brand names such as Eagle to companies that print logos on them and sell them to colleges and universities across the country.

Two BP Workers Suffer Steam Burns

September 22, 2010 4:48 am | News | Comments

HOUSTON (AP) — A BP spokesman says two workers at the company's Texas City refinery have been hospitalized after suffering steam burns. Refinery spokesman Michael Marr said the accident happened about 4 p.m. Tuesday. He told the Houston Chronicle he had no other details on how the injuries occurred.

AC Inverters For All Situations

September 21, 2010 10:58 am | Product Releases | Comments

High-Lites (Wallingford, CT) introduces the PFT Series of universal, fast transfer AC inverter systems. They’re designed to accommodate small- to medium-sized projects requiring emergency power back-up, and unlike ballast packs, they provide reliable emergency power sine wave output to any connected load or fixture.

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Brakes Get Bigger

September 21, 2010 10:58 am | Product Releases | Comments

Twiflex Limited/Hilliard Corp. (South Beloit, IL) is offering its grinding mill braking systems, which have wrap-around motors that measure 38’ in diameter by 45’ in length. The braking system is designed to provide both static and dynamic braking function, and the system can operate in two modes, stopping from full speed in an emergency or providing inching functions in the event of bearing lubrication or power failures.

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Take Your Computer Anywhere

September 21, 2010 10:56 am | Product Releases | Comments

The RC Series Mobile Powered Workstation from Newcastle Systems (Woburn, MA) has on-board power to run a laptop, a printer, and a scanner or other device for at least eight hours of normal use, according to the company. Its small footprint (18.5” x 22”) makes it ideal for narrow aisles and small spaces.

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Hybrids Cleaning Plant Floors

September 21, 2010 10:55 am | Product Releases | Comments

Brush and Clean (Ft. Lauderdale, FL) has announced the release of their HybridPro Carpet & Hard Floor Cleaner, which is designed to effectively clean both hard flooring and carpet. The system utilizes counter-rotating brushes to scrub and actively lift dirt, grime, and cleaning compound to instantly produce dry, clean surfaces, according to the company.

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A Post-Brunch Wave Of Regret

September 21, 2010 6:04 am | by by Anna Wells, Executive Editor, IMPO | Blogs | Comments

This past weekend, I returned to eggs for the first time since the recall. After five weeks of brunch abstinence, I went back to my favorite local Southwestern restaurant for their breakfast quesadilla. Sunday brunch is a staple, and I’d been avoiding it due to the recent bad press. This past weekend I was starting to waver.

Subaru Hiring 100 At Ind. Plant On Rising Demand

September 21, 2010 4:58 am | News | Comments

LAFAYETTE, Ind. (AP) — A Subaru assembly plant in central Indiana plans to add 100 full-time production jobs to its work force over the next six months. Subaru of Indiana Automotive says the new full-time workers will come from among its current temporary employees at the factory near Lafayette.

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Hyundai To Build Compact At Montgomery Factory

September 21, 2010 4:57 am | News | Comments

DETROIT (AP) — Hyundai Motor Co. will begin building the new Elantra compact at its factory in Montgomery, Ala., late this fall, the Korean automaker announced Monday. The Elantra, previously built in South Korea, will be an all-new model introduced in showrooms early next year. It will make its U.

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Bulked-Up Salmon Might Become The New Normal

September 21, 2010 4:57 am | by Mary Clare Jalonick, Associated Press Writer | News | Comments

WASHINGTON (AP) —  U.S. regulators are weighing whether to approve genetically modified salmon for human consumption, and if they do, it might not be labeled any differently from conventional fish. It is still unclear whether the Food and Drug Administration will approve the fish, which was created by a Massachusetts company and grows twice as fast as its conventional counterparts.

Firefighter Injured At Four-Alarm Peanut Butter Fire

September 21, 2010 4:54 am | News | Comments

SEATTLE (AP) — Seattle firefighters have controlled a four-alarm blaze that tore through the former Sunny Jimpeanut butter plant in south Seattle, injuring a firefighter and sending smoke high into the air. An estimated 120 firefighters responded Monday to the vacant, city-owned, two-story building.

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Ford Abandons Ranger Pickup In North America

September 21, 2010 4:53 am | News | Comments

DEARBORN, Mich. (AP) — Ford Motor Co. has confirmed that it will not sell the next generation of the small Ford Ranger pickup truck in North America. The market for small pickups has shrunk in recent years, and Ford believes it can cover the whole North American market with multiple versions of its F-150 full-size pickup truck, said Mark Schirmer, a spokesman for the Dearborn, Mich.

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