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Daily industrial news and top headlines for plant and maintenance managers

FabEnCo Awards First LIFE Scholarship

September 3, 2013 1:19 pm | by FabEnCo

FabEnCo, Inc., a leading manufacturer of self-closing safety gates, announced today that Walter Smith from Southeastern Oklahoma State University was the first recipient of the FabEnCo “LaCook Investment for Excellence” (LIFE) in Occupational Safety & Health Scholarship. Walter received his award during ASSE’s 120th Annual Conference & Exposition held in Atlanta, Georgia, in June.

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Hackers Find Weaknesses In Car Computer Systems

September 3, 2013 10:21 am | by Tom Krisher, AP Auto Writer

As cars become more like PCs on wheels, what's to stop a hacker from taking over yours? Hackers have shown they can slam a car's brakes at freeway speeds, jerk the steering wheel and even shut down the engine — all from their laptop computers.

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NH's New Law Protecting Auto Dealers Is Challenged

September 3, 2013 10:19 am | by Rik Stevens, Associated Press

Farm and heavy equipment manufacturers including John Deere have sued to block a new law that gives New Hampshire auto dealers new protections in their contracts with them. The companies say the so-called Auto Dealers Bill of Rights, which takes effect Sept. 23, improperly lumps them in with automakers.

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Toyota To Boost U.S. Transmission Production

September 3, 2013 10:17 am | by The Associated Press

Toyota said Friday that it will spend $102 million to increase U.S. production of transmissions. The company said that it will boost its automatic-transmission assembly and machining capacity at its Buffalo, W. Va., plant, as well the capacity at its powertrain plant and Bodine Aluminum casting facilities in Missouri and Tennessee.

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Ammonia Leak Kills 15 People In Shanghai

September 3, 2013 10:15 am | by The Associated Press

At least 15 people were killed Saturday after liquid ammonia leaked from a refrigeration unit at a cold storage plant in China's financial hub of Shanghai, the local government said. Twenty-five people were injured in the accident, which happened at a plant in the Baoshan district of the east coast city, the Shanghai government Information Office said. Five of the injured were in serious condition.

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Nordex To Repay $2.5M To AR After Layoffs

September 3, 2013 10:13 am | by The Associated Press

Nordex USA Inc. is repaying more than $2.5 million it received in incentives after announcing it would halt production on its wind turbine plant in Jonesboro and lay off 40 workers. The Arkansas Economic Development Commission announced Friday that the company would repay $2.31 million to the state and $204,814 to Jonesboro that it had received for the wind turbine plant. 

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Ford Recalls 370,000 Cars

September 3, 2013 10:11 am | by The Associated Press

Ford is recalling 370,000 cars due to potential corrosion to their steering shaft that may result in loss of steering. No incidents or injuries have been reported. The cars include 2005 to 2011 Ford Crown Victoria, Mercury Grand Marquis and Lincoln Town Cars. About 355,000 are in the U.S. and 15,000 in Canada.

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Wes Pringle Named President Of Fluke Corporation

August 29, 2013 3:02 pm | by Fluke Corporation

Wes Pringle has been named President of Fluke Corporation. Pringle, who has been serving as President of Fluke Industrial, is now responsible for all Fluke global businesses, including Fluke Calibration, Fluke Biomedical and Fluke Automation. Pringle succeeds Barbara Hulit, Fluke President since 2004.

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Americans Love Driving Less

August 29, 2013 2:34 pm | by Joan Lowy, Associated Press

Driving in America has stalled, leading researchers to ask: Is the national love affair with the automobile over? After rising for decades, total vehicle use in the U.S. — the collective miles people drive — peaked in August 2007. It then dropped sharply during the Great Recession and has largely plateaued since.

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Report Outlines 'Lost Decade' For NY Workers

August 29, 2013 2:32 pm | by Michael Virtanen, Associated Press

A new report on New York's economy calls the last 10 years a "lost decade" for typical workers, with median wages dropping almost 7 percent for men and about 1 percent for women. The Fiscal Policy Institute said the recovery from the Great Recession shows more underemployment despite the state restoring overall jobs lost in the downturn.

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MD Police Raid Turns Up Fake Apple Products

August 29, 2013 2:30 pm | by The Associated Press

Maryland State Police say raids at Arundel Mills Mall turned up hundreds of counterfeit Apple products for sale at a store and kiosk. Police say troopers served search warrants at the Cyberion store and the ST Tech Pros kiosk last week and found hundreds of counterfeit Apple Inc. products being sold as authentic factory replacements. 

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WestJet Plans To Buy 65 737 Max From Boeing

August 29, 2013 2:28 pm | by The Associated Press

Canadian airline WestJet plans to buy 65 of the new fuel-efficient 737 Max aircraft from Boeing as it looks to modernize its fleet. Boeing said Thursday that the pending order is valued at $6.3 billion at current list prices.

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U.S. Sugar Producers Receive Good News

August 29, 2013 2:24 pm | by Dave Kolpack, Associated Press

Questions about low sugar prices, dry growing conditions, discolored product and a bloated North American market due in large part to Mexican exports had American Crystal Sugar Co. officials reeling in recent weeks. But CEO David Berg told employees about plans by Mexico's soft drink industry to buy more of its own cane sugar so less of it will be sold elsewhere, an issue that has frustrated U.S. executives.

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Report: 38,600 Clean Energy Jobs Announced In Q2

August 29, 2013 2:18 pm | by E2

Companies and communities across the United States announced at least 58 clean energy and clean transportation projects in the second quarter of 2013 that could create as many as 38,600 jobs, according to a report released by the nonprofit business group Environmental Entrepreneurs (E2).

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Applications For U.S. Unemployment Aid Fall

August 29, 2013 2:06 pm | by Christopher S. Rugaber, AP Economics Writer

The number of Americans seeking unemployment benefits remained near the lowest level in more than five years last week, a sign that companies are cutting few jobs. First-time applications for benefits fell 6,000 to a seasonally adjusted 331,000, the Labor Department said Thursday.

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First U.S.-Made Smartphone Cheap To Produce

August 29, 2013 2:05 pm | by The Associated Press

Motorola's new Moto X phone doesn't cost more to make simply because it's assembled in Texas, research firm IHS said. The Moto X is the first smartphone to carry the "Made in the U.S.A." designation. Labor costs are higher in the U.S. compared with Asian factories, where phones are typically made.

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Obama To Address AFL-CIO Convention Next Month

August 29, 2013 2:02 pm | by Jim Kuhnhenn, Associated Press

President Barack Obama will speak to the AFL-CIO's Quadrennial Convention next month in Los Angeles. The AFL-CIO is a key part of the Democratic base, but Obama has a fragile relationship with the group. White House and labor officials confirm Obama's attendance on Sept. 9. 

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Predator Drone Now Part Of CA Wildfire Battle

August 29, 2013 1:59 pm | by Brian Skoloff, Tracie Cone, Associated Press

As crews advanced against a giant wildfire around Yosemite National Park, fire commanders said they would maintain use of a Predator drone to give them early views of any new flare-ups across the remote and rugged landscape. Officials remained confident on Thursday about their efforts to corral the Rim Fire, which grew by a relatively modest few hundred acres overnight.

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1,400 New Employees Kick Off U.S. Fusion Production

August 29, 2013 1:20 pm | by Ford Motor Company

Supported by 1,400 new employees, the new Ford Fusion rolled off the line at Flat Rock Assembly Plant yesterday, marking the first time the popular car has been built in the United States. The move expands Fusion availability by more than 30 percent – up to 350,000 units annually – as the midsize sedan is setting sales records for Ford.

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PMMI Gives Workforce A JumPPstart

August 29, 2013 1:12 pm | by PMMI

By working together, PMMI members hope to spark a new generation of manufacturing workers. They say it takes a village to raise a child. PMMI members in Milwaukee and Minneapolis would put it another way: “It takes an industry to raise a workforce.” 

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