On the face of it the loss of its manufacturing facility in the Buncefield Oil Depot blaze in December 2005 could have been completely ruinous for subcontractor PCD. However with the support of suppliers, fellow traders and its insurer, PCD was up and running again within a matter of days. Furthermore, the disaster has given the company the opportunity to review its business and to re-establish itself with a greater range of manufacturing services in purpose designed premises.
Although its building was deemed unsafe after the blast PCD was fortunate not to suffer significant equipment loss. Its powder-coating line and a graining and deburring machine were irreparable as was the laser resonator on a machine that is central to its production, the Trumpf L2530 flatbed laser. Otherwise everything remained operable and in the immediate aftermath the PCD team simply donned hard hats and continued manufacturing as best they could.
Thanks to the swift work of insurers however PCD soon found temporary accommodation in the old Aquascutum factory in Hemel Hempstead. Within a matter of days the company had re-located the lion's share of its production facility. In addition to its Trumpf flatbed, PCD also has two Trumatic punching machines and Chairman, Phil Cutts is quick to commend Trumpf's speed and efficiency in getting these important machines up and running again.
He explained, "Having installed the L2530 at the new site Trumpf ordered a replacement laser resonator from Germany at 3.30pm the same afternoon. When I arrived at the factory at 8.30am the following day it was already on the machine. Trumpf really did us proud."
Plans for PCD's new factory on the original site have now been finalised. The company hopes to move into its new 19,000ft2 purpose-built premises, complete with new facilities, by the end of November 2006. In the meantime, it's pretty much business as usual for this tenacious subcontractor.
Contact: Gerry Jones