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IMPO Insider

Daily industrial news and top headlines for plant and maintenance managers

GM, Toyota, VW Sales Stall Out In September

October 1, 2013 2:13 pm | by Dee-Ann Durbin, Tom Krisher, AP Auto Writers

Sales fell at General Motors, Toyota, and Volkswagen in September, an odd month that appears likely to snap a 27-month streak of gains for the American auto industry. But Ford and Chrysler appeared to have outperformed the industry, with sales on the rise.

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American Crystal Sugar To Default On USDA Loan

October 1, 2013 2:11 pm | by The Associated Press

American Crystal Sugar will default on a government loan of $71.2 million under a program that provides relief when a glut of sugar on the market depresses prices. David Berg, the company's president and CEO, said that forfeiting the sugar put up as collateral was the best option, given the very low prices that sugar is fetching.

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Bridgestone Drops Plan To Close Italian Car Tire Plant

October 1, 2013 2:09 pm | by The Associated Press

Bridgestone will keep running its passenger car tire plant in Italy, dropping an earlier plan to close it in 2014, on the condition that the plant's productivity and costs improve, the Japanese firm's European arm said. An agreement was signed by all stakeholders including local institutions, the Ministry of Welfare and trade unions to implement a plan for the plant to focus solely on tires for general use, Bridgestone Europe NV/SA said.

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Government Shutdown Begins

October 1, 2013 10:18 am | by Andrew Taylor, Associated Press

Congress plunged the nation into a partial government shutdown Tuesday as a protracted dispute over President Barack Obama's signature health care law reached a boiling point, forcing some 800,000 federal workers off the job. Obama readied a midday statement to the nation as Democrats and Republicans maintained a blame-each-other duel on Capitol Hill.

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Bozeman Company Cited For Safety Violations

October 1, 2013 10:17 am | by Matt Volz, Associated Press

A Bozeman company that produces brass casings for ammunition manufacturers and individuals who load their own ammunition faces a possible $45,500 fine for failing to protect its employees from lead exposure, federal workplace safety regulators said Monday.

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BMW Recalls 176K Vehicles Over Power Brake

October 1, 2013 10:15 am | by The Associated Press

German carmaker BMW is recalling 176,000 vehicles from the model years 2012 to 2014 over a problem with the power brake system. The company says in rare cases an interruption in the oil supply to a part can mean the loss of power braking assist. The brakes will still work, but the driver would have to press harder on the pedal.

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Hattiesburg, MS Sues Hercules Over Pollution

October 1, 2013 10:13 am | by The Associated Press

The City of Hattiesburg is suing Hercules Inc. and parent company Ashland Inc., claiming groundwater contamination from a closed factory may leach into the city's water supply. The city filed suit Thursday in federal court in Hattiesburg.   

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Merck To Cut 8,500 More Jobs

October 1, 2013 10:11 am | by The Associated Press

The drugmaker Merck said Tuesday that it plans to cut another 8,500 jobs as part of a plan to reduce its annual costs by about $2.5 billion by the end of 2015. In addition, Merck will move its headquarters from Whitehouse Station, N.J., to existing facilities in Kenilworth, N.J.

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Eurozone Unemployment 'May Have Peaked'

October 1, 2013 10:10 am | by Pan Pylas, Associated Press

The eurozone's labor market appears to have stabilized, official figures indicated Tuesday, another sign that the eurozone economy is recovering from its longest-ever recession. Though Eurostat, the EU's statistics office, said the unemployment rate across the 17-member eurozone held steady at 12 percent in August, it found the number of people out of work fell for the third month running.

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The Manufacturing Institute, University of Phoenix Announce 2013 Scholarship Winner

September 30, 2013 4:11 pm | by Okuma America Corporation

Okuma America Corporation, a world-leader in CNC machine tool manufacturing, announces that Chris Davala has been chosen to receive one of ten scholarships given to current or transitioning employees in the manufacturing industry from the University of Phoenix and the Manufacturing Institute.

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3M Becomes Exclusive Distribution Partner For DEUS Rescue Safety Markets

September 30, 2013 3:56 pm

DEUS Rescue today announced a distribution agreement with 3M Company that will give the 3M Personal Safety Division exclusive distribution rights to DEUS Rescue products in fall protection-related industries. Under the agreement, 3M will sell DEUS® controlled descent devices, kits, and related accessories through its broad network of distributors and dealers starting in late 2013.

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NASA Preparing To Launch 3D Printer Into Space

September 30, 2013 2:26 pm | by Martha Mendoza, AP National Writer

NASA is preparing to launch a 3D printer into space next year, a toaster-sized game changer that greatly reduces the need for astronauts to load up with every tool, spare part or supply they might ever need. The printers would serve as a flying factory of infinite designs, creating objects by extruding layer upon layer of plastic from long strands coiled around large spools. 

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A New Cry In France: 'Let Us Work Sundays!'

September 30, 2013 2:24 pm | by Jamey Keaten, Associated Press

Under French law, Sunday is a mandatory day off to help ensure rest and the quality of life, although some retailers in tourist areas or special commercial zones can get exemptions. Critics say the protections go too far, crimping modern lifestyles and putting France at a competitive disadvantage.

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Prosecutor: Greed Led To Deadly NH Plant Explosion

September 30, 2013 2:22 pm | by Lynne Tuohy, Associated Press

The owner of a New Hampshire gunpowder plant where two workers were killed in a May 2010 explosion was motivated by profit and greed and did not take adequate precautions to ensure employee safety, a prosecutor said in his opening argument as the trial began Monday for the Vermont man authorities blame for the fatal blast.

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Judge Hears Claims BP Lied To U.S. About Oil Spill

September 30, 2013 2:20 pm | by Michael Kunzelman, Associated Press

A trial over BP's oil spill in the Gulf of Mexico resumed Monday with a judge hearing claims that the company lied to federal officials and withheld information about the amount of crude spewing from its blown-out well. The focus of this second phase of the trial is on the company's response to the disaster, and billions of dollars are at stake because the two sides disagree over how much oil spewed into the Gulf in 2010.

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Global Study: World Not Ready For Aging Population

September 30, 2013 2:17 pm | by Kristen Gelineau, Associated Press

The world is aging so fast that most countries are not prepared to support their swelling numbers of elderly people, according to a global study going out Tuesday by the United Nations and an elder rights group. The report ranks the social and economic well-being of elders in 91 countries, with Sweden coming out on top and Afghanistan at the bottom.

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Mazda To Recall About 200,000 Mazda6 Cars

September 30, 2013 2:15 pm | by The Associated Press

Mazda Motor Corp. has issued a recall on 198,671 units of the Mazda6 car produced between February 2008 and this August in the United States for potentially defective latches that could allow a door to open while the car is in motion, a Mazda official said.

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Workmanship Blamed For 2011 Tear In 737's Roof

September 30, 2013 10:32 am | by Gene Johnson, Associated Press

A National Transportation Safety Board report blames shoddy workmanship for an in-flight tear in the roof of a Southwest Airlines plane in 2011. The Boeing 737-300 was en route from Phoenix to Sacramento, Calif., on April 1, 2011, when a 5-foot-long gash opened in the fuselage.

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Union Approves Contract Extension At Oshkosh Corp.

September 30, 2013 10:30 am | by The Associated Press

Union workers at Oshkosh Corp. have given the company what it says it needs to make a competitive bid on a military contract worth billions of dollars. United Auto Workers Local 578 voted Sunday to extend the contract five years after it expires in 2016. The extension protects more than 2,500 jobs at the Fox Valley's largest manufacturer.

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Trial Set For VT Owner Of NH Gunpowder Plant

September 30, 2013 10:27 am | by Lynne Tuohy, Associated Press

The owner of a New Hampshire gun powder plant where two workers died in a 2010 explosion will argue in court that he cannot be guilty of manslaughter and negligent homicide because he was at a gun show in North Carolina when the fatal explosion occurred. The trial of 64-year-old Craig Sanborn, of Maidstone, Vt., starts Monday in Coos Superior Court in Lancaster.

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