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IMPO Insider

Daily industrial news and top headlines for plant and maintenance managers

United Steelworkers Ratify Deal With Ludlum

August 8, 2011 5:46 am

PITTSBURGH (AP) — The United Steelworkers have ratified a four-year contract with Pittsburgh-based Allegheny Technology Inc. covering 3,000 workers at Allegheny Ludlum plants in western Pennsylvania and an ATI plant in Albany, Ore. The union and Pittsburgh-based ATI announced the tentative deal June 30, the day the last contract expired.

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Mustangs, Jettas Under Safety Investigation

August 8, 2011 5:44 am

DETROIT (AP) — Safety investigators are looking into possible transmission problems in some 2011 and 2012 Ford Mustang models and fuel lines in 2011 Volkswagen Jettas. The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration's Office of Defects says on its website Sunday that it has received 32 complaints about an unexpected inability to shift into gear on Mustangs with manual transmissions.

Toyota Hopes For Revival After Sinking To No. 3

August 8, 2011 5:42 am | by Yuri Kageyama, AP Business Writer

TOKYO (AP) — Toyota Motor Corp., which has sunk to No. 3 in global vehicle sales from pole position, is counting on emerging markets to drive a revival in its fortunes, one of its top India executives says. Toyota sold 3.7 million vehicles around the world in the first half of 2011, down 11 percent from a year earlier as sales crashed 62 percent in April-June on production disruptions caused by the March earthquake and tsunami in northeastern Japan.

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Congress Has Shot At Passing Jobs-Creation Bill

August 8, 2011 5:40 am | by Jim Abrams, Associated Press

WASHINGTON (AP) — When Congress gets back to work after Labor Day it will have the chance to achieve something that has largely eluded it for the entire year, passing legislation that might actually create jobs. With the battering debate over the debt ceiling over, the stage is set for Congress to approve and President Barack Obama to sign three big free-trade agreements and the most significant overhaul of the patent system in 60 years.

Honda Recalls 1.5M Vehicles

August 8, 2011 5:37 am

WASHINGTON (AP) — Honda is recalling about 1.5 million vehicles in the U.S. to update the software on the automatic transmission to decrease the possibility of transmission damage. The recall affects certain 2005-2010 4-cylinder Accord, 2007-2010 CR-V and 2005-2008 Element vehicles.

South Korean Biotech To Build VT Plant

August 5, 2011 7:47 am

NEWPORT, Vt. (AP) — Vt. Gov. Peter Shumlin and U.S. Sen. Patrick Leahy are going to announce a plan by a South Korean biotechnology company to build a facility in Newport that will eventually employ about 200 people. The announcement is planned for Friday in Newport. The project is being put together by Jay Peak ski area president Bill Stenger who is partnering with South Korean company AnC Bio to build a $50 million plant that will be called AnC Bio Vermont.

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Orthopedics Company Plans $27M IN Project

August 5, 2011 7:44 am

WARSAW, Ind. (AP) — A northern Indiana company that makes hip replacements and other artificial joint products is planning to spend $27 million on manufacturing and research equipment. Warsaw-based DePuy (duh-PEW') Orthopaedics expects to spend $20 million on manufacturing equipment and $7 million on research and development equipment and have it installed before 2014.

Boeing Wraps Up 747-8 Testing

August 5, 2011 7:41 am | by Joshua Freed, AP Business Writer

Boeing painted the numbers "7-4-7" in the skies from Minnesota to California on the final test flight for its new jumbo jet. A map on the flight-tracking service FlightAware shows that the plane left the airport in Everett, Washington, and flew over Montana, south to California, and back north working its way across North Dakota and Minnesota, with trips as far south as New Mexico and Oklahoma, to spell out "747.

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RV Companies Look To Green Tech For Recovery

August 5, 2011 7:31 am

EUGENE, Ore. (AP) — Lane County's fragile recreational-vehicle manufacturing industry could find hope in an unexpected place — green technology. The Eugene Register-Guard reports RV manufacturer Country Coach has plans to develop a diesel-electric hybrid, but that plan will have to wait as the local luxury motor coach industry tries to survive.

AR Turkey Plant Searches For Outbreak Clues

August 5, 2011 7:29 am | by Nomaan Merchant, Associated Press

LITTLE ROCK, Ark. (AP) — The operator of a Springdale, Ark. turkey plant responsible for a massive ground turkey recall was searching for answers Thursday to what caused a salmonella outbreak that's been linked to one death and at least 77 illnesses. Officials at the meat giant Cargill were trying to determine how a strain of salmonella got into ground turkey shipped from northwest Arkansas, said company spokesman Mark Klein.

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Obama Proposes Tax Credits To Hire Jobless Vets

August 5, 2011 7:26 am | by Julie Pace, Associated Press

WASHINGTON (AP) — President Barack Obama proposed tax credits for businesses and other initiatives on Friday to help some of America's 1 million military veterans find work. He also vowed to press Congress to get busy on legislation to provide more near-term jobs in general when lawmakers return from their recess in September.

Morton Salt Plans $7M Plant Upgrade

August 5, 2011 5:21 am

SOUTH HUTCHINSON, Kan. (AP) — Morton Salt Co. has asked South Hutchinson city authorities for a 10-year tax abatement as it plans to upgrade its salt evaporation plant. In its application, the company says it wants to invest $7 million in the renovations to modernize the century-old plant, according to The Hutchinson News.

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Terex Cranes Plans Plant Closing

August 5, 2011 5:19 am

WILMINGTON, N.C. (AP) — A North Carolina maker of industrial cranes says it's closing a manufacturing plant by the end of the year, putting about 90 people out of work. WWAY reported Thursday that Terex Cranes will shut down production in Wilmington, where it assembles and fabricates tower cranes.

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OSHA Fines PA Bottling Plant

August 5, 2011 5:16 am

ALLENTOWN, Pa. (AP) — Federal regulators say they have cited an eastern Pennsylvania bottling company after finding two dozen workplace safety and health violations. The Occupational Safety and Health Administration said Wednesday it's levying nearly $111,000 in fines against A-Treat Bottling Co.

July Hiring Up, Unemployment Rate Dips

August 5, 2011 5:15 am | by Christopher S. Rugaber, AP Economics Writer

WASHINGTON (AP) — Hiring picked up slightly in July and the U.S. unemployment rate dipped to 9.1 percent. The modest improvement may quiet fears of another recession after the worst losses on Wall Street in nearly three years. Employers added 117,000 jobs last month, the Labor Department said Friday.

OSHA Investigating Death Of Fork Lift Driver At ID Plant

August 5, 2011 5:12 am

PAYETTE, Idaho (AP) — Idaho State Police and the Occupational Safety and Health Administration are investigating the death of a fork lift driver at a food processing plant in Payette. The Payette County coroner tells KTVB-TV that 59-year-old Thomas Walker of Payette died Wednesday afternoon when he was hit by a semi tractor-trailer that was backing up in a loading dock area at the Seneca plant.

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Chrysler Recalls 367,000 Minivans - Again

August 5, 2011 5:09 am

DETROIT (AP) — Chrysler is recalling more than 367,000 Dodge and Chrysler minivans because the air bags can go off unexpectedly. It's the second recall of the 2008 Chrysler Town and Country, Chrysler Voyager and Dodge Grand Caravan minivans for a similar problem. Those vans were recalled in January because water from the air conditioner could leak onto the computer chips that control the air bags, and that could make them inflate.

Black & Decker Agrees To Pay $960K Penalty

August 4, 2011 9:09 am

WASHINGTON (AP) — The Consumer Product Safety Commission, the federal consumer watchdog agency, said Wednesday that Black & Decker agreed to pay a $960,000 civil penalty to settle allegations it knowingly failed to report some safety problems with its Grasshog XP Weed Trimmer/Edger.

Greenbrier Gets $285M Railcar Order

August 4, 2011 9:07 am

LAKE OSWEGO, Ore. (AP) — The Greenbrier Cos. said Thursday it has received orders for 3,700 new railcars valued at about $285 million. The orders are primarily for double-stack intermodal cars, boxcars, covered hopper cars and tank cars for North America and various car types for the European market.

Hitachi, Mitsubishi Deny Deal Talks

August 4, 2011 9:05 am | by Tomoko A. Hosaka, Associated Press

TOKYO (AP) — Japanese manufacturing giants Hitachi Ltd. and Mitsubishi Heavy Industries Ltd. denied Thursday they are in talks to combine their businesses, just hours after Hitachi's president said an announcement was imminent. Both companies reiterated that media reports about a possible business combination were untrue but the speculation made waves with investors who pushed up shares of both companies.

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