Carrier Transicold is commemorating the 25th anniversary of its U.S. manufacturing facility in Athens, Ga., where truck and trailer refrigeration units are manufactured to rigorous quality specifications in order to safely transport food and other temperature-controlled cargoes. Carrier Transicold helps improve global transport and shipping temperature control with a complete line of equipment for refrigerated trucks, trailers and containers, and is a part of UTC Building & Industrial Systems, a unit of United Technologies Corp.
“Athens has been a pivotal location for Carrier Transicold to maintain a sustainable manufacturing operation in the U.S., enabling Carrier Transicold to serve customers around the world,” said Tom Ondo, general manager, Carrier Transicold Truck/Trailer/Rail Americas. “We’ve experienced sustained growth and productivity over the past 25 years, and the most important factor fueling the exceptional performance is our highly skilled, dedicated employee family.
“To put the workforce expertise in perspective, the average Carrier Transicold Athens employee has been with the company for more than 12 years, with many approaching the 20-year mark, and we have more than 80 employees who began with the operation 25 years ago,” said Ondo, himself one of the original members of the Athens team. “Our long-term employees are a very important aspect of what makes the Athens operation so successful as a competitive global provider of transport refrigeration units.
Carrier Transicold was formed when Carrier acquired the California-based Transicold Co. in 1970. Truck and trailer refrigeration system manufacturing was relocated in 1988 to the present location in Athens. There, Carrier Transicold’s Vector™, X2™ and X4™ trailer refrigeration units and Supra™ truck refrigeration units are produced, as well as PowerLINE™ generator sets that are used to power refrigerated shipping containers
The Athens plant is certified according to the International Organization for Standardization (ISO). With continual investments in new manufacturing technologies over the past 25 years, the facility remains highly productive and is known throughout the industry for its high-quality products. Advanced manufacturing technologies and processes, joined with an exceptional and talented workforce, make the operation a significant contributor to Carrier Transicold’s success.
Carrier Transicold’s manufacturing philosophy is centered on safety, technology and sustainability, with the ultimate goal of delivering the highest quality products. In addition to productivity gains, recent investments in the Athens operation have resulted in sustainability achievements such as reducing water usage by 33 percent, producing 44 percent less industrial process waste, eliminating 69 percent of non-recycled waste and decreasing its carbon footprint by 44 percent since 2006.
In terms of safety strides, the Athens facility achieved the Star level with the Occupational Safety and Health Administration’s Voluntary Protection Program in 2010, and recently achieved another safety milestone – more than 5.8 million hours without a lost-time accident. The plant also received several UTC Building & Industrial Systems’ President’s Awards, including two for 2012.
Carrier Transicold’s Athens employees are active supporters of the local communities in which they live and work, each year raising funds and contributing countless hours of volunteer support to numerous organizations, including United Way of Northeast Georgia, American Cancer Society, March of Dimes, Food Bank of Northeast Georgia, Soles4Souls and several others.
In that spirit, employees even turned a recent anniversary commemoration into another fundraiser. This year the plant acquired a bulldog sculpture – significant in the Athens community, which is also home to the University of Georgia Bulldogs. An artist with connections to the Athens community was commissioned to adorn the sculpture with scenes reflecting the company’s heritage, and employees held a naming contest, generously voting with their wallets from a roster of 10 names. “Frostbite” was the winning name, and the local United Way chapter was the beneficiary of the proceeds raised.
“Our employees take great pride in their work and in the community, as well as the fact that our products are assembled here in Athens,” said Matt Walker, plant manager. “Together we’ve accomplished a tremendous amount over the past 25 years, and we’re looking forward to seeing what the team can do next.”