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Daily industrial news and top headlines for plant and maintenance managers

2 Missing Workers Found In PA Oil Fire, 1 Injured

September 3, 2009 8:49 am

CREIGHTON, Pa. (AP) — Emergency dispatchers say two workers who were unaccounted for after oil spilled and caught fire at a plant near Pittsburgh have been found, but one has been injured. Allegheny County dispatchers say the fire at Pitt Penn Oil Co. in East Deer Township was reported about 11:30 a.

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Sun-Times Closing Chicago-Area Printing Press

September 3, 2009 8:44 am

CHICAGO (AP) — The Chicago Sun-Times' parent company is closing a suburban printing plant, which is expected to cost 70 jobs. Sun-Times spokeswoman Tammy Chase confirms the Sun-Times Media Group plans to close its Pioneer Press printing plant in Northfield. Pioneer Press publishes dozens of Chicago-area community newspapers owned by the ailing conglomerate.

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TN Company Buys Gramercy Alumina Plant, Hikes Production

September 3, 2009 6:36 am

GRAMERCY, La. (AP) — At a time when aluminum producers are struggling with low prices and excess capacity, the new owners of the Gramercy Alumina plant in St. James Parish are ramping up production to gain market share, company officials said Thursday. "By increasing our production, we're really trying to take advantage of well-positioned assets," said Kyle Lorentzen, chief operating officer of Noranda Aluminum, which acquired full ownership of the 50-year-old alumina plant in Gramercy this week and told some of its 470 employees "if we're not growing, we're dying.

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Boeing Plane Deliveries Drop 22% In August

September 3, 2009 6:15 am

PITTSBURGH (AP) — Airplane maker Boeing says deliveries of its commercial jets slid 22 percent and orders fell 11 percent in August, as airlines cancel or postpone plans to buy new planes. Chicago-based Boeing said Thursday it delivered 28 passenger and cargo jets last month. That's down from 36 during the same month last year, according to figures posted on the company's Web site.

Laid Off Bobcat Employees 'Unhirable' In 50s

September 2, 2009 10:20 am | by James MacPherson, Associated Press Writer

BISMARCK, N.D. (AP) — Bobcat Co., which makes small loaders and light construction equipment, announced Wednesday its Bismarck plant will be closed permanently and the bulk of the 475 jobs shifted to its plant in Gwinner in southeastern North Dakota. Union officials say laid-off workers in Gwinner will have first shot at the positions.

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Maysteel To Close WI Factory, Cut 165 Jobs

September 2, 2009 4:31 am

MENOMONEE FALLS, Wis. (AP) — Maysteel says it will close one of its Menomonee Falls factories, eliminating 165 jobs and relocating another 25. The Menomonee Falls, Wis.-based company makes electric power parts. The company said Tuesday it will close the local plant by the end of the year.

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France Threatens Blacklist Of U.S. Electronics Manufacturer

September 2, 2009 4:27 am

PARIS (AP) — A French minister on Wednesday threatened to ask French automakers to blacklist an American electronics company if managers don't find a way to keep its French plant open. Industry Minister Christian Estrosi has been trying to broker a deal with executives of Illinois-based Molex Inc.

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Pfizer To Pay Record $2.3b Settlement

September 2, 2009 4:21 am

WASHINGTON (AP) — People familiar with a record legal settlement to be announced Wednesday say that Pfizer Inc., the world's largest drugmaker, will pay $2.3 billion in connection with illegal drug promotions. The U.S. Justice Department plans a news conference later in the day to announce the terms of the deal.

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Factory Orders Rise 1.3 Percent In July

September 2, 2009 4:16 am | by Christopher S. Rugaber, AP Economics Writer

WASHINGTON (AP) — Orders to U.S. factories rose less than expected in July as reduced demand for petroleum products offset a jump in orders for aircraft and other transportation goods. Still, orders rose for the fifth time in six months, a sign that the manufacturing sector is continuing to recover from a steep downturn.

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Ex-Toyota Lawyer Files Lawsuit Over Cover-Up

September 2, 2009 4:11 am

LOS ANGELES, Sept. 1 (Kyodo) — A former lawyer of Toyota Motor Sales U.S.A. Inc. filed a lawsuit against the company in late July, alleging he was pressured to conceal information from victims of rollover accidents involving sport utility vehicles and trucks, U.S. media reported Tuesday. In the lawsuit, Dimitrios Biller accused the U.

1,200-Worker Automotive Plant Closing In AL

September 1, 2009 9:56 am

HUNTSVILLE, Ala. (AP) — Continental Automotive Systems U.S. says it will close its automotive parts plant in Huntsville by Dec. 31 next year, laying off more than 1,000 workers. Monday's announcement comes a month after Continental warned that cutting costs in product development and manufacturing were necessary to save the company.

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Raytheon To Assist With Taiwan Missle Defense

September 1, 2009 8:39 am

TEWKSBURY, Mass. (AP) — Defense contractor Raytheon Co. said Tuesday it has been awarded a contract worth $26.9 million to provide technical assistance to Taiwan's missile defense system. The award from the U.S. Army Aviation and Missile Command represents a modification to a technical assistance contract granted in 2008.

Kansas City Rejected In New Harley Plant Survey

September 1, 2009 8:34 am

KANSAS CITY, Mo. (AP) — Harley-Davidson Inc. says it will not build a second manufacturing plant in Kansas City. The Kansas City Star reports that the motorcycle manufacturer told city officials Monday that the city did not make the cut as Harley-Davidson looks to build a potential replacement for its plant in York, Pa.

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GE To Expand SC Aviation Business, Hire 140

September 1, 2009 6:20 am

GREENVILLE, S.C. (AP) — General Electric Co.'s aviation business says it will expand operations in South Carolina and add 100 jobs by 2013. The state Department of Commerce announced Tuesday that GE Aviation will move from its 50,000 square-foot building in Greenville to a 150,000 square-foot site in the city.

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Man Confirms Guilty Plea In July 5 WI Meatpacking Fire

September 1, 2009 6:11 am

MILWAUKEE (AP) — One of two brothers accused of starting a $50 million fire at a Cudahy meatpacking plant pleaded guilty Tuesday. Prosecutors say 25-year-old Kurtis Popp fired a military flare July 5 given to him by his brother. The flare landed on a roof at the Patrick Cudahy Inc. meatpacking plant and ignited the fire.

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Manufacturing Indexes Showing Growth After 18 Months

September 1, 2009 4:39 am

NEW YORK (AP) — U.S. manufacturing, aided by government rebates to first-time homebuyers and car buyers, likely experienced some growth in August after shrinking for 18 months. Economists expect a national measure of manufacturing activity to show the sector grew last month. That hasn't happened since January 2008, as a recession triggered by the U.

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Boeing Jetliner Head Steps Down Amid 787 Faults

September 1, 2009 4:22 am | by Daniel Lovering, AP Manufacturing Writer

Boeing Co. said Monday that Scott Carson will step down as head of its commercial airplane division, ending a tenure marked by costly problems with the company's much-delayed 787 jetliner. The Chicago-based company said Carson will be succeeded Tuesday by the head of its defense business, Jim Albaugh.

Deere To Invest $125m In Russian Plant

September 1, 2009 4:16 am | by Daniel Lovering, AP Manufacturing Writer

Deere & Co., the world's largest agricultural-equipment maker, said Monday its board of directors has approved a plan to invest $125 million to establish a new manufacturing and parts center in Russia. The Moline, Ill.-based company said the facility near Moscow will be capable of making a broad range of John Deere products, including tractors and harvesting equipment, as well as construction and forestry products.

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Stillwater, OK Anticipates Mercury Marine's Exit From WI

August 31, 2009 12:27 pm | by Murray Evans, Associated Press Writer

OKLAHOMA CITY (AP) — Officials in Stillwater said Monday they're happy to hear boat engine maker Mercury Marine could be moving hundreds of jobs to their city, even if they sympathize with a Wisconsin city that may be losing those jobs. Mercury Marine said Sunday it intends to move the jobs to Stillwater after a union rejected a contract proposal that would have kept the jobs at the company's Fond du Lac, Wis.

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Trial For Iowa Slaughterhouse Raid Could Be Moved

August 31, 2009 12:10 pm | by Nigel Duara, Associated Press Writer

CEDAR RAPIDS, Iowa (AP) — A federal judge on Monday delayed the trial of four former top managers at an Iowa slaughterhouse where 389 people were arrested last year in what was the largest immigration raid in U.S. history at the time. U.S. District Court Judge Linda Reade agreed to an Oct.

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