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Daily industrial news and top headlines for plant and maintenance managers

Formrite To Buy Thermo Fisher Plant

November 14, 2011 8:24 am

TWO RIVERS, Wis. (AP) — Formrite Companies Inc. says it has reached an agreement to purchase Thermo Fisher Scientific's steel cabinetry plant in Two Rivers. Thermo Fisher previously announced plans to close the plant and move its steel fabrication to Texas and Mexico. Formrite owner, president and CEO David Wage says the companies plan to close the sale by the end of the year, and then Formrite will begin moving all of its manufacturing operations to the new plant.


States Weigh Benefits Of Utility Smart Meters

November 14, 2011 8:19 am | by Stephen Singer, Susan Haigh, Associated Press

HARTFORD, Conn. (AP) — The cost of using an air conditioner — whether it runs during the peak time for electrical usage or during off-peak hours — is still the same for many electricity users across the country. The same goes for using a clothes dryer. Many utilities and state energy officials, some armed with federal stimulus money, think that should change and are advocating so-called "smart meter" technology in a growing number of states.


Mayor Says Tire Plant Delayed

November 14, 2011 8:16 am

MACON, Ga. (AP) — The mayor of Macon says a tire manufacturer's plans to build a sprawling plant in Bibb County have been delayed. Mayor Robert Reichert tells The Telegraph ( that Gov. Nathan Deal met with representatives of the South Korean company on a recent oversees trip and learned that construction will not begin for at least two more years due to economic conditions.


Analyst: Bills Rising Due To Overpriced Renewables

November 14, 2011 8:12 am | by Garance Burke, Jason Dearen, Associated Press

SAN FRANCISCO (AP) — Dozens of renewable energy plants being built to meet California's tough global warming laws, including a major Spanish-owned solar plant in the Mojave Desert, are so overpriced they will increase consumers' energy bills for decades, according to the independent watchdog arm of the state's s utility regulator.


U.S. Companies Feel European Crisis

November 14, 2011 8:10 am | by Christopher S. Rugaber, Jonathan Fahey, Michael Liedtke, AP Business Writers

NEW YORK (AP) — The tremors from Europe's financial upheaval have reached U.S. shores, rattling consumers and companies. The consequences have been limited so far. Yet the United States and Europe are so closely linked that any slowdown across the Atlantic is felt here. U.S. makers of cars, solar panels, drugs, clothes and computer equipment have all reported effects from Europe's turmoil.

MSC Safety Catalog Reflects Customer Commitment

November 14, 2011 5:34 am

MSC Industrial Direct Co., Inc. (Melville, NY), a leading distributor of safety products and services, is adding more than 500 new items and 33,000 skus to its new 2012 MSC Safety Catalog in response to strong customer demand. “Work accidents can cost our customers billions of dollars per year,” said Anthony Testa, MSC business manager for MRO.

China's Recalled Bullet Trains To Resume Service

November 14, 2011 4:27 am

BEIJING (AP) — Bullet trains on China's showcase Beijing-to-Shanghai line that were recalled over safety concerns following a deadly crash on another line will gradually resume service from this week, Chinese state media reported Monday. China's state-owned train maker, China CNR Corp.

Japan's Economy Rises Out Of Earthquake Slump

November 14, 2011 4:24 am | by Tomoko A. Hosaka, Associated Press

TOKYO (AP) — Japan's economy grew for the first time in four quarters in a comeback from the earthquake and tsunami disaster that already faces multiple global headwinds. The world's No. 3 economy expanded at an annualized rate of 6 percent in the July-September period, driven by exports, the Cabinet Office said in a preliminary report Monday.


Rules Lag As Factory Dust Explosions Kill Workers

November 14, 2011 4:22 am | by Travis Loller, Associated Press

NASHVILLE, Tenn. (AP) — Each year, people are killed and maimed by explosions of finely powdered wood, metal or chemicals at factories around the country. Safety experts have studied the threat posed by dust at industrial sites for nearly a decade, yet tighter regulations are still years away.


Leasing Firm Boosts Airbus Order

November 14, 2011 4:20 am | by Adam Schreck, AP Business Writer

DUBAI, United Arab Emirates (AP) — Airbus on Monday fattened an order for its new A320neo jets and Boeing snagged another customer for the 787 at the Dubai Airshow as Mideast buyers showed they remain bullish despite the uncertain global economy. The deals, which followed a record $18 billion airplane order from Dubai airline Emirates the day before, added ammunition to forecasts from the two major aircraft manufacturers that predicted the region will continue to generate hundreds of billions of dollars in demand for new planes for years to come.

CAT Shifts Manufacturing From Japan

November 14, 2011 4:17 am

PEORIA, Ill. (AP) — Caterpillar Inc. said Friday that it plans to move some of its manufacturing from Japan to North America, a move that it says will put it closer to its many customers in North America and Europe. Caterpillar, based in Peoria, Ill., hasn't decided where the new plant will be, but it plans to do so by the end of the year.


NHTSA Probing GM Gear Shift Trouble

November 14, 2011 4:14 am

DETROIT (AP) — Federal safety regulators are investigating problems with the automatic shift levers on several General Motors cars. The probe began with the Saturn Aura midsize car from the 2007 and 2008 model years, affecting nearly 89,000 vehicles. But the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration says on its website that it's looking into the same problem with other GM cars.

Former Union City Goodyear Plant Sold

November 11, 2011 7:47 am

NASHVILLE, Tenn. (AP) — The former Goodyear tire plant in Union City has been sold to a maker of off-road equipment tires, officials said Friday. The sale to Titan Tire Corporation is effective immediately, but the purchase price is not being disclosed, Goodyear Tire and Rubber Co.


Battery Life Fix Available Through Apple Software Update

November 11, 2011 7:38 am

CUPERTINO, Calif. (AP) — Apple has released a software update to fix a problem that is shortening the battery life of some iPhones, iPads and iPods. Apple has said that a small number of customers have reported lower-than-expected battery life on devices running on the company's iOS 5 operating system.

Electric Car Battery Catches Fire After Crash Test

November 11, 2011 7:32 am

WASHINGTON (AP) — Federal officials are examining the safety of electric car batteries after a Chevy Volt's lithium-ion battery caught fire. The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration said Friday the fire occurred in June, several weeks after the car had been crashed-tested at an agency facility.

VA Nuclear Plant Gets OK To Restart

November 11, 2011 7:26 am

RICHMOND, Va. (AP) — Dominion Virginia Power's North Anna Power Station, the first operating U.S. nuclear plant shut down because of an earthquake, can restart after being offline since the Aug. 23 tremor that shook millions along the East Coast, the U.S. Nuclear Regulatory Commission said Friday.


Analysis Says $79 Kindle Costs $84 To Make

November 11, 2011 6:25 am

SAN FRANCISCO (AP) — A recent analysis from IHS iSuppli determined that Amazon's $79 Kindle e-reader, which is the online retailer's cheapest Kindle thus far, costs $84.25 to make. In the report, iSuppli said the total cost of materials for the Kindle is $78.59, including $30.50 for the e-reader's 6-inch E-ink display.

Alcoa Offers NC Officials Jobs-For-License Deal

November 11, 2011 6:18 am

RALEIGH, N.C. (AP) — Aluminum maker and energy company Alcoa Inc. said Thursday that it is making a $50 million promise to create hundreds of jobs for residents along the Yadkin River valley in a few years — but only if officials stop fighting a 50-year federal license to keep operating a series of dams that could generate billions of dollars in electricity sales.


Starbucks Buys Juice Co., Plans Chain Of Health Stores

November 11, 2011 3:58 am

PORTLAND, Ore. (AP) -- Starbucks Corp. hopes to do for juice what it's done for coffee. The Seattle-based company that changed the way Americans drink their cup of Joe said Thursday that it acquired by juice maker Evolution Fresh Inc. for $30 million as part of a larger effort to move beyond just offering coffee.

Scandal-Hit Olympus May Become Buyout Target

November 11, 2011 3:44 am

TOKYO, Nov. 11 (Kyodo) — Having succeeded in building a strong presence in the medical equipment market, Olympus Corp. now faces the challenge of survival and may become a buyout target as its corporate value is being downgraded after admitting it hid past securities investment losses.


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