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IMPO Insider

Daily industrial news and top headlines for plant and maintenance managers

BlackBerry Says Rework Costs Have Quadrupled

October 2, 2013 10:04 am | by David Friend, The Canadian Press

BlackBerry says the cost of reworking its operations will likely be four times as much as it estimated earlier this year and may turn out to be even be higher than that. According to financial report documents filed with regulators, the smartphone maker expects to book US$400 million in charges from a variety of factors before the end of May 2014.

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Mercedes-Benz To Build New Factory In Brazil

October 2, 2013 10:02 am | by The Associated Press

Daimler AG's Mercedes-Benz says it will build a new plant in Brazil to produce its C-class sedan and GLA compact sport-utility vehicle. The German automaker says in a Tuesday statement that the company will make an initial investment of 500 million reals ($224 million) to build the plant in the city of Iracemapolis in Sao Paulo state.

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BP Executive Defends Spill Response Tactics

October 2, 2013 10:00 am | by Michael Kunzelman, Associated Press

A BP executive who led the company's efforts to halt its massive 2010 oil spill in the Gulf of Mexico testified Tuesday that his decisions were guided by the principle that they shouldn't do anything that could make the crisis even worse. James Dupree, BP's first witness for the second phase of a trial over the deadly disaster, said his teams worked simultaneously on several strategies for killing the well that blew out in April 2010.

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New Report: U.S. Trade Deficit With China Costing $37B In Lost Wages Annually

October 1, 2013 3:30 pm

A new study by the Economic Policy Institute finds that a growing trade deficit with China has cost the U.S. billions of dollars in lost wages. In 2011 alone, unbalanced trade with the People’s Republic resulted in lost U.S. wages of $37.0 billion. The EPI study cites 2.7 million U.S. jobs lost between 2001 and 2011 due to the trade gap with China, and over 2.1 million of those jobs were in the manufacturing sector. 

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Toyota Acceleration Trial Draws To A Close

October 1, 2013 2:23 pm | by The Associated Press

A jury could begin deliberating as early as Tuesday to determine whether Toyota Motor Corp. should be held liable for the death of a California woman who was killed when her Camry apparently accelerated and crashed despite her efforts to stop.  

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NC Man Gets 7 Years For Selling Fake Airbags

October 1, 2013 2:19 pm | by The Associated Press

A Union County man accused of selling thousands of counterfeit airbags has been sentenced to seven years in prison. Prosecutors say Igor Borodin sold more than 7,000 airbags on eBay that he obtained from Chinese manufacturers. Borodin, 27, pleaded guilty last October to trafficking in counterfeit airbags and delivering hazardous materials for air transportation.

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OSHA Cites Manufacturer After Fatal Forklift Accident

October 1, 2013 2:17 pm | by The Associated Press

Federal officials have cited an upstate New York manufacturer for 16 safety violations after a fatal forklift accident. National Pipe and Plastics, Inc. of Vestal has been cited by the Occupational Safety and Health Administration for serious violations of workplace health and safety standards.

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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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