Crane Plastics forms UK unit to sell innovative mud flaps

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COLUMBUS, OHIO (Feb. 21, 2:20 p.m. ET) — Crane Plastics has formed a subsidiary in Edinburgh, Scotland, that is distributing a mud flap that increases fuel economy and safety.

Spraydown Solutions Ltd. is led by Matt Fenneman, who serves as managing director for the new company as well as vice president of sales and marketing for Columbus, Ohio-based Crane Plastics. The mud flaps are manufactured in Columbus.

The mud flaps employ Spraydown Aeroguard Technology and are intended for use on heavy trucks. As the product name indicates, the mud flaps direct water spray from inclement weather down to the road, out of the driver’s view.

The aerodynamic design allows for 1-3 percent fuel savings by reducing drag and smoothing airflow via strips cut into the mud flap. Spraydown is durable in temperatures ranging from -40-122° Fahrenheit.

The product is used primarily in the United Kingdom and Europe in response to spray suppression legislation. Sales in the United States are growing via a distribution arrangement with Betts Spring Co. in Fresno, Calif. Over fifty fleets are in test.

Crane Plastics has two extrusion manufacturing facilities, in Columbus and Jacksboro, Tenn. Products manufactured by the company include vinyl siding, cellular manufacturing and processing and tooling design advancements. The custom extrusion business is called Engineered Profiles LLC.

“We are always looking on expanding into new markets and have been doing so in areas like heavy duty trucking, office furniture, lawn and garden, agriculture, as well as many other industries,” Erik Tait, marketing coordinator for Crane, said. “We are diversifying.  We would love to sell a stick of plastic to anyone who needs a stick of plastic.”

In 2009, top managers at Crane Plastics bought a majority share of the company from Crane Group. This expansion is the first of its type for the company since Crane Group became a minority interest.

Other proprietary products by Crane Plastics in conjunction with other companies include Perma Flow and the Waterfall gutter protection systems and Atlas Deck Stringers, which provide deck plank support.