Toyoda to launch Indiana site in 2005
NAGOYA, JAPAN - Japan's Toyoda Gosei Co. Ltd. is continuing its expansion in North America with a new interior automotive parts plant in New Albany, Ind.
The plant will be part of the firm's TG Missouri Corp. Officials for Nagoya-based Toyoda are wrapping up details on the purchase of a building for the factory, said Jack Ragland, president of the Southern Indiana Economic Development Council.
The plant, set to open by spring, will employ more than 100.
Toyoda has other injection molding sites in Palmerston, Ontario; Lebanon, Ky.; and Perryville, Mo., home to TG Missouri.
Plastech, Visteon can't seal plant deal
ROMULUS, MICH. - A deal for Visteon Corp. to sell its new Chicago interior parts plant to Plastech Engineered Products Inc. has fallen apart.
The two companies could not come to an agreement that would work for both parties, said Visteon spokesman Jim Fisher.
The plant assembles and sequences interior modules for Ford Motor Co. sedans at Ford's new supplier park. It opened earlier this year.
Dearborn, Mich.-based Plastech and Visteon, based in Van Buren Township near Romulus, had announced a proposed sale of the operation in August.
Mesa worker's death under investigation
HIGH POINT, N.C. - Virginia safety officials are investigating the Oct. 12 death of an employee at a Mesa Industries blow molding plant in Abingdon.
The preliminary investigation looks like the employee's skull was crushed in a machine, but the agency can't provide more details while the investigation is ongoing, said Jennifer Wester, director of cooperative programs for the Virginia Department of Labor and Industry.
Company officials did not return calls, but local news reports identified the employee as 34-year-old Steven Crabtree, a manager at the plant.
Mesa is based in High Point, but the Abingdon site makes PET water bottles at a customer's facility, said Mesa's Web site.
OSHA fines Formosa in fatal explosion
LIVINGSTON, N.J. - Federal safety officials Oct. 22 proposed a $361,500 fine against Formosa Plastics Corp. USA for an April 23 explosion at its Illiopolis, Ill., PVC plant that killed five workers and destroyed much of the facility.
The Occupational Safety and Health Administration issued three willful violations, the most severe the agency can assess, and 45 serious violations. OSHA focuses on safety issues, but the cause of the blast remains under investigation.
The alleged willful safety violations include failing to maintain fire protection equipment, failing to replace or repair defective equipment used in highly hazardous chemical processes, and inadequate testing of equipment used in those processes, according to a news release from OSHA's Chicago office.
The serious violations include hazards associated with flammable liquids, insufficient worker training, lockout/tag-out and insufficient training on emergency response and equipping of fire brigade personnel, OSHA said.
Formosa officials could not be reached immediately for comment. The Livingston-based firm has 15 days to contest the fines before an agency review body. Besides the five deaths, the explosion seriously injured three people.
Formosa bought the plant in 2002 from Borden Chemicals and Plastics LP, and cut about 60 of the plant's 135 jobs in May. The plant had no previous OSHA inspections, the agency said.
German extrusion firm buys Canplast
MONTREAL - Germany's Surteco AG has acquired Canplast Inc. of Montreal.
Both firms make PVC and ABS edge banding for applications like furniture production. Terms of the Oct. 1 sale were undisclosed.
Canplast President Felix Furst estimated his firm's sales last year at about C$48 million (US$38.4 million). Canplast also has a production plant in Greensboro, N.C. Furst said he expects no changes to the two businesses.
Surteco is based in Gladback, Germany. Its Doellken-Woodtape subsidiary has an extrusion plant in Brampton, Ontario, and makes wood edge banding in Everett, Wash.