Recent History – 1998
By Mark Nielsen, Daily News Staff, July 20, 1998
The Louisiana-Pacific oriented strand board plant is going through a major rebuild that will not only make for a better plant but also shows a commitment to Dawson Creek, says manager Randy Johnson.
Over the course of the five-week shutdown, expected to last until Aug. 10, he said some $7 million worth of work is being done. Rebuilding the press, used to compress fibre into oriented strand board, is the main reason for the shutdown. After 11 years of near continuous operation, Johnson said it was time to overhaul the press, considered the most important piece of machinery in the plant. With the use of a crane, and after a hole was cut in the roof, the press was taken out last week, and shipped to the United States for repairs.
The down-time is also being used to work on other parts of the plant, beginning with the hot ponds at the in-feed part of the plant. The ponds, used to condition the logs before they’re sent into the plant, are being rebuilt, as are all three of the dryers inside.
Maintenance work is also being done throughout the rest of the plant, on such items as the thermal oil system, and the blenders. Improvements are also being made, particularly in the press room. In the end, they hope to have greater control over the thickness and quality of boards they produce.
“Essentially, we believe we will increase both quality and productivity as a result of this shutdown,” said Johnson.
He also pointed out that more capital money going into the Dawson Creek plant this year than into any other oriented strand board plant that Louisiana-Pacific operates.
“So it’s a major commitment on behalf of this company to the long term future of this plant,” he said. Louisiana-Pacific is the largest employer in Dawson Creek. Some 140 people work there.
This article is taken from the Peace River Block Daily News, Dawson Creek, with the permission of the publisher. The Daily News retains all rights relating to this material. The information in this article is intended solely for research or general interest purposes.