Worker killed in Calif. PVC plant accident
SAUGUS, CALIF. — A 34-year-old worker at Keysor-Century Corp. was killed Dec. 5 in an industrial accident at the PVC resin manufacturing company.
Keysor President Howard Hill said the centrifuge dryer that employee Gary Wolling of Newhall, Calif., was working at was operating properly, and safety shields were in place.
``Somehow he got something caught under the guard,'' and Wolling was pulled into the machine, Hill said in a Dec. 9 telephone interview. There were no witnesses.
``We've never had a fatality in 50 years as a company,'' said Hill. ``It is tragic.''
The privately held, Saugus-based firm operates 24 hours a day, seven days a week, producing PVC resins for the flooring and packaging markets. It employs about 100 and is located 35 miles north of Los Angeles on a 35-acre site with five buildings covering about 150,000 square feet, according to Hill. Keysor also operates a smaller compounding plant in Newark, Del.
A spokesman for the Los Angeles County Sheriff's Department described the employee's death from traumatic injuries as ``accidental'' and said it is being investigated by the California Occupational Safety and Health Administration. California OSHA officials were not available for comment.
Western Reserve moving wimdows facility
GALLATIN, TENN. — Western Reserve Products Inc. said it will close its Gallatin plant Feb. 1 and move production to its Matamoros, Mexico, facility, across the border from Brownsville, Texas.
Western Reserve makes inset door windows, doorway side windows and transoms using glass, plastic glazing and molded plastic frames. It claims to be the largest U.S. manufacturer of such products, with sales of about $60 million in 1996.
The Nashville, Tenn., firm said the move to Mexico will enable it to remain competitive against rivals that have operations to China. It will expand its 2-year-old Matamoros plant to accommodate the extra production.
Confederate plant gets clean molding area
LEXINGTON, KY. — Confederate Plastics Inc. added a controlled environment molding area to its Lexington plant.
The firm spent about $1 million, mainly on equipment, to convert part of its facility for clean molding, estimated Jon Isenstein, senior vice president. It began operating the new area early in November to mold medical products such as fluid delivery systems, he said in a telephone interview.
Confederate, which will change its name to Interplex Plastics Inc. on Jan. 1, bought four new Milacron Roboshot electric presses for the clean area and installed new materials-handling and air-control equipment. The presses range from 35-165 tons. The company said it chose electric machines because they are cleaner and more precise than standard hydraulic presses.
Confederate runs 34 presses with clamping forces of 24-500 tons. It focuses on high-volume, tight-tolerance molding for medical, electronics and business equipment manufacturing markets. The 17-year-old company reported annual sales of about $8 million. It employs about 100.
Isenstein said his firm is changing its name to publicize its affiliation with parent company Interplex Industries of Flushing, N.Y.
IPL wins $53 million automotive contract
ST. DAMIEN, QUEBEC — IPL Inc., an injection molder and extruder in Saint Damien, has been awarded a US$53 million contract to supply auto parts to a major Tier 1 supplier.
The contract will begin next year and stretch over a five-year period, the company said. The supplier's identity and the type of parts produced were not disclosed, at the supplier's request. The parts will be used on Ford Motor Co. vehicles.
Earlier this year, the Canadian firm completed a major expansion of its injection molding operation at its St. Damien plant. The firm installed 10 new injection presses with clamping forces of 260-2,600 tons. The US$12.6 million expansion also included adding 30,000 square feet to its facility. The company credited the investment in new machinery in helping it win the contract.
IPL makes plastic packaging containers and rigid-wall handling boxes and does custom molding for automotive, transportation and defense industry applications.
The company was 72nd on Plastics News' rankings of North American injection molders last year with about US$61.1 million in related sales.