Plum Creek facility back up and running after fire
After explosions and fire rocked a Plum Creek MDF facility in Columbia Falls, Montana on June 10, the company announced that production has resumed again.
Employees were all safely evacuated, with no reported injuries. An investigation determined that a mechanical failure caused the fire. There is also an estimated $8 million to $10 million worth of damage at the plant.
“We are very thankful that all the local fire and safety departments rallied to protect the people working at the facility," said VP northwest resources and manufacturing Tom Ray.
The No. 2 production line, where the company makes between 1/10th and 1/2-inch continuous-press fiberboard, officially restarted June 30. The No. 1 production line, which produces up to 1 1/2-inch fiberboard, will be back in full gear this week.
Plum Creek had continued shipping existing product to customers during the three-week closure. Additionally, no employee lost a day of work, with many assigned tasks to help with the recovery effort.
Ray added that Plum Creek will donate $15,000 to the response units that helped successfully contain the fire. “Their work is greatly appreciated and we hope these funds support the important work they provide every day to our community,” he said.
LP SolidStart stud crosses the pond
Timber customers in the United Kingdom will now be able to avail themselves of LP’s SolidStart Simply Better Stud.
LP recently launched the product across the pond, touting its ability to minimize plasterboard cracks, nail popping, wall rippling and skirting & cornice gaps.
The Simply Better Stud promises greater uniformity and consistency, greater dimensional stability and added performance. The straight design also reduces the need for a mid-height wall noggin that’s normally used with timber studs, acccording to the company.
“Simply Better Studs create a more stable wall by dramatically improving straightness and stability,” said Al Huber, international sales manager for LP Building Products’ EWP division. “And because they are not subject to knots, wane or excessive warping, every piece can be used. This reduces not just waste, but also the risk of ‘call backs’ associated with shrinkage and movement, making it a revolutionary new alternative for the UK’s timber market.”
The Toro Company turns 100
On Thursday, July 10, The Toro Company looked back on a century’s worth of farm and ranch innovations during its 100th anniversary celebration.
More than 2,000 employees, retirees, partners and guests came to the company headquarters in Bloomington, Minnesota, including Minnesota Governor Mark Dayton and Bloomington Mayor Gene Winstead.
“As we celebrate our first 100 years, it was truly gratifying to be surrounded by many of those who played such a significant role in the company’s success,” said chairman and CEO Michael Hoffman. “We are honored to have such talented employees around the world and individuals who have served the company throughout our history, along with great channel and business partners, who work every day to serve our customers and help advance our efforts in the industry. And, I especially want to thank Minnesota Governor Mark Dayton and Bloomington Mayor Gene Winstead for joining our centennial celebration and honoring the people of Toro.”
Dayton also took the stage to announce that the day would be known as "Toro Day" across Minnesota.
“Part of the mentality of Toro is reaching out to its customers and to the communities, and developing high-quality products while strengthening your market through innovation,” said Governor Dayton. “I don’t think that the founder could have imagined 100 years ago that Toro would grow to be a Fortune 1000 company, or that more importantly, you’d be a leading corporate citizen in Minnesota. Your contributions to this state have been enormous.”
Also at the event was a new display telling the story of Toro’s history, which included various vintage products (the first Toro-branded piece of equipment among them).
Toro has been celebrating its centennial for the entirety of the year, part of which has included a ‘100 Acts of Caring’ initiative wherein employees planted 100 trees in each Toro community across the world.