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IMPO Insider

Daily industrial news and top headlines for plant and maintenance managers

Texas Energy Company Protests $18 Million Mercury Fine

February 17, 2010 3:17 am | by Eric Tucker, Associated Press Writer

PROVIDENCE, R.I. (AP) — A Texas energy company convicted of illegally storing hazardous mercury in a rundown Rhode Island building asked a federal appeals court Tuesday to throw out an $18 million penalty, calling the punishment "grossly excessive." The mercury, stored by the Southern Union gas company in a building in Pawtucket, was exposed to the public in 2004 after vandals broke in and dumped a container of the hazardous liquid at a nearby apartment complex.

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Obama Calls $8.3 Billion Nuclear Grant 'Only The Beginning'

February 16, 2010 10:02 am

bu Julie Pace, Associated Press Writer LANHAM, Md. (AP) — Promising "this is only the beginning," President Barack Obama announced more than $8 billion in federal loan guarantees Tuesday for the construction of the first nuclear power plant in the United States in nearly three decades.

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Ford Cuts 900 At Michigan Mustang Plant

February 16, 2010 7:48 am

DETROIT (AP) — Ford Motor Co. is cutting 900 workers at the Michigan plant that makes the Mustang. Ford said Tuesday that the Flat Rock plant will go from two shifts to one in July. The plant, which is jointly owned with Mazda, also makes the Mazda6. Nearly 2,300 people work there.

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Toyota Idles Two Assembly Plants

February 16, 2010 5:11 am | by Ken Thomas,Associated Press Writer

WASHINGTON (AP) — Toyota says it plans to idle production at two assembly plants while it grapples with massive recalls in the United States. Toyota spokesman Mike Goss says a plant in San Antonio, Texas, has scheduled production breaks for the weeks of March 15 and April 12.

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Chrysler Supplier Doubles Up, Ready To Hire 65 Workers

February 16, 2010 4:03 am

KENDALLVILLE, Ind. (AP) — A northeastern Indiana auto parts plant plans to hire 65 workers in the coming months as it starts a contract with Chrysler. Creative Liquid Coatings Inc. manager Stephen Geist told Kendallville officials that the company is buying robots and other equipment for the new production line.

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Complaints Of Sudden Acceleration Deaths Rise To 34

February 16, 2010 3:47 am | by Ken Thomas, Associated Press Writer

WASHINGTON (AP) — Complaints of deaths connected to sudden acceleration in Toyota vehicles have surged in recent weeks, with the alleged death toll reaching 34 since 2000, according to new consumer data gathered by the government. Complaints to a database maintained by the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration about the popular Toyota Prius hybrid grew by nearly 1,000 in just over a week.

LG Hausys Expands In Georgia, Adds 80 Jobs

February 16, 2010 3:37 am

ADAIRSVILLE, Ga. (AP) — Gov. Sonny Perdue says surface countertop manufacturer LG Hausys America Inc. will expand its operations in Adairsville, creating up to 80 new jobs. The expansion is planned next to the company's existing facilities in Gordon County in northwest Georgia. The governor's office says the new plant will cover about 95,000 square feet and will require an investment of about $50 million.

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Spanish Turbine-Maker Announces Milwaukee Plant

February 16, 2010 3:36 am

MILWAUKEE (AP) — A Spanish manufacturer of wind-turbine generators will build its first American manufacturing plant in Milwaukee. Milwaukee Mayor Tom Barrett made the announcement involving Ingeteam during his annual State of the City address Monday. The Zamudio, Spain-based company will locate its North American headquarters and manufacturing facility in the Menomonee Valley.

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Temp Workers No Longer Predictor Of Recovery

February 16, 2010 3:33 am | by Jeannine Aversa, AP Economics Writer

WASHINGTON (AP) — It's not the signal it used to be. When employers hire temporary staff after a recession, it's long been seen as a sign they'll soon hire permanent workers. Not these days. Companies have hired more temps for four straight months. Yet they remain reluctant to make permanent hires because of doubts about the recovery's durability.

Obama Provides $8.3 Billion Loan For Nuclear Plant

February 16, 2010 3:30 am | by Darlene Superville, THE ASSOCIATED PRESS

WASHINGTON — President Barack Obama will announce a guarantee of $8.3 billion (C6.1 billion) in loans for the first new U.S. nuclear power plant in nearly three decades, underscoring the administration's efforts to reduce dependence on foreign oil. Obama was to make remarks Tuesday after touring a jobs centre in Maryland.

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Brother: Work On Conn. Plant Had 'Substandard' Safety

February 12, 2010 5:40 am | by John Christoffersen, Associated Press Writer

NEW HAVEN, Conn. (AP) — The brother of one of five workers killed in an explosion at a power plant under construction says his brother called the project "screwed up," and a worker on the job the day before the explosion says safety on the job was "substandard." The concerns about pressure to get the job done and safety standards at the Kleen Energy Systems plant in Middletown were raised in interviews with The Associated Press on Wednesday, and add to a growing number of questions about work conditions at the site.

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Strong Growth Predicted For Industrial Wireless

February 12, 2010 5:08 am

Research Triangle Park, NC — The Wireless Industrial Networking Alliance (WINA), expert wireless resource for the industrial market, today announced results of its first End-Users survey on the application of wireless technology in the automation industry at the ARC Forum in Orlando, Florida.

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Cleveland Home To New 'Gasification' Power Plant

February 12, 2010 4:43 am

CLEVELAND (AP) — The city of Cleveland will soon be burning trash to power homes and businesses. A $1.5 million agreement signed with the New Jersey-based Princeton Environmental Group would design a 20-megawatt power plant fueled by municipal waste. The plant, the first of its kind in the U.

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Toyota Plans Tell-All To Rebuild Consumer Trust

February 12, 2010 4:08 am | by Malcolm Foster, Associated Press Writer

TOKYO (AP) — Toyota said Friday it's planning a new level of disclosure about car problems beyond what the automaker is legally required to reveal as it seeks to rebuild consumer trust. The move comes amid intensifying pressure for the automaker's president Akio Toyoda to testify before the U.

Inventor, Manufacturer Of The Frisbee Dies At 90

February 12, 2010 3:46 am | by Doug Alden, THE ASSOCIATED PRESS

SALT LAKE CITY — Walter Fredrick Morrison, the man credited with inventing the Frisbee, has died. He was 90. Utah House Rep. Kay McIff, an attorney who represented Morrison in a royalties case, says Morrison died at his home in Monroe, Utah, on Tuesday. McIff is from Richfield, Morrison's original hometown.

Specialists Purge Gas Lines At Middletown Blast Site

February 12, 2010 3:44 am

MIDDLETOWN, Conn. (AP) — Specialists from a natural gas delivery company helped vent a pipe Thursday at a Connecticut power plant where an explosion killed five people. Officials say the venting procedure posed no danger to the public but was necessary to vent natural gas out of about 800 feet of pipeline to the Kleen Energy Systems plant in Middletown.

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135 Jobs Cut As GM Moves Parts Factory To Mexico

February 12, 2010 3:43 am

COLUMBIA CITY, Ind. (AP) — A union official says about 135 people will be out of work as a northeastern Indiana auto parts factory shuts down. It will be the second time in a year that Fort Wayne Foundry Corp. has closed its Columbia City plant. The company restarted the factory in July, weeks after it laid off more than 600 workers by closing plants in Fort Wayne and Columbia City.

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Nissan To Take Orders For Electric Leaf In April

February 12, 2010 3:42 am | by Dan Strumpf, AP Auto Writer

NEW YORK (AP) — Nissan Motor Co. said Thursday that it will start signing up customers in April who want to buy its new Leaf electric car, with shipments starting by the end of the year. Nissan has shown the five-passenger sedan, which can go 100 miles on a single charge, at cities around the country over the last three months in a push to market zero-emission technology.

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Humvee's Last Hurrah In The U.S. Army

February 12, 2010 3:41 am | by Carly Everson, Associated Press Writer

INDIANAPOLIS (AP) — Army Staff Sgt. Tom Davis never saw the bomb that destroyed his Humvee as he rounded a corner in Ramadi just a week into his second tour in Iraq in 2006. Davis lost a leg and broke his back and both arms and can no longer walk or work. He'll never know whether he would have been less severely injured if he'd been in a different vehicle.

U.S. To Average 95,000 Jobs Per Month In 2010

February 11, 2010 8:40 am | by Philip Elliott, Associated Press Writer

WASHINGTON (AP) — The U.S. is likely to average 95,000 more jobs each month this year, while personal savings will remain high as credit remains tight, according to a White House report released Thursday. The Council of Economic Advisers also trumpeted the $787 billion economic stimulus package, which it said has saved or created about 2 million jobs.

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