Formosa restarting Texas site after blast
POINT COMFORT, TEXAS - Formosa Plastics Corp. USA is restarting production in Point Comfort after an Oct. 6 explosion and fire that injured 11 workers.
The last fire resulting from the explosion was extinguished Oct. 12, the Livingston, N.J.-based firm said in an Oct. 13 news release. Damage was limited to one section of an ethylene and propylene production unit, officials said.
The explosion occurred when a contract employee backed a forklift into a liquid propylene line, causing a break in a fitting or valve, company officials said. The propylene that was released then vaporized and traveled along the ground until it found an ignition source, they said.
One employee remained hospitalized Oct. 12 in good condition. The Victoria (Texas) Advocate identified the remaining victim as Roger Green, 30. Green suffered burns over more than 30 percent of his body, according to the paper.
As of Oct. 12, the site's PVC and vinyl chloride monomer units were operating at reduced rates. Production of polyethylene, polypropylene, ethylene, propylene and other products is scheduled to resume before Oct. 24.
PolyOne closing Ohio compounding plant
AVON LAKE, OHIO - PolyOne Corp. plans to close its compounding plant in Broadview Heights, Ohio, to consolidate operations and reduce costs.
No date has been set for the closing of the plant, which employs about 35, said Dennis Cocco, vice president of investor relations for Avon Lake-based PolyOne. The plant is the only PolyOne site that makes both engineered materials and color compounds.
Some workers will be transferred to other PolyOne locations, while other jobs will be eliminated, Cocco added.
Broadview Heights employees were told of the pending closing the week of Oct. 10, just a few days after the surprise announcement that PolyOne President and Chief Executive Officer Thomas Waltermire was resigning after five years in that position.
Ontario official resigns amid Royal probe
ONTARIO - A new police investigation involving Royal Group Technologies Ltd. caused Ontario's top finance official to resign.
Greg Sorbara was one of three former Royal Group officials named in a Royal Canadian Mounted Police search warrant served Oct. 11. Sorbara, a Royal Group director from 1994 when Royal Group became a public company until 2003, resigned as Ontario Finance Minister later that day.
The RCMP warrant alleged Sorbara, former Royal Group Chairman Vic De Zen, former Chief Executive Officer Douglas Dunsmuir and others deceived the company, shareholders and creditors. It alleged fraud involving the sale of two lots of land in Brampton, Ontario, in 1996 and 1997.
The RCMP warrant was served at Sorbara Group, Bank of Nova Scotia, and Zzen Group of Cos., controlled by De Zen. Sorbara Group is a family-owned property developer from which Greg Sorbara stepped down when he was named to Ontario's cabinet in 2003.
Sorbara several times publicly denied that he knew any reason RCMP named him in the warrant.
ITW buys testing instrument maker Instron
GLENVIEW, ILL. - Testing instrument maker Instron Corp. has a new owner: Illinois Tool Works Inc.
Glenview-based ITW bought Instron of Norwood, Mass., from private equity firm Kirtland Capital Partners. Terms were not disclosed. Cleveland-based Kirtland Capital had bought Instron in 1999 and took it private.
For the plastics industry, Instron makes equipment for testing materials on such properties as tensile strength, compression, puncture resistance, impact strength, hardness and fatigue. The company also makes equipment for structural testing.
Norwood, Mass.-based Instron expects 2005 sales of about $240 million.
David Speer, ITW's president and CEO, said Instron has an installed base of more than 70,000 testing instruments around the world.