HURRICANE IMPACT: Fiberglass costs to rise

Fleets using truck bodies made of fiberglass take note should be aware that the cost of fiberglass is about to rise significantly, due to the run-up in energy prices since the Gulf Coast hurricanes struck

Fleets using truck bodies made of fiberglass take note should be aware that the cost of fiberglass is about to rise significantly, due to the run-up in energy prices since the Gulf Coast hurricanes struck.

Pittsburgh-based fiberglass maker PPG Industries plans to raise its prices six cents per pound starting Nov. 1 for all fiberglass shipments in North and South America, said Victoria Holt, company spokesperson.

PPG also said it would not enter into long-term contracts without price flexibility to offset unanticipated energy and other inflationary costs outside the company’s control. Since late last year, natural gas costs have doubled, driven in part by the impact of Hurricanes Katrina and Rita.

“The sudden, unanticipated impact to energy costs has made an already unsustainable situation even worse for energy-intensive manufacturing in the U.S. – and there is no clear end in sight,” Holt said. “Though we continue to eliminate costs from our structure at every possible opportunity, there simply is no way to recover millions of dollars of immediate cost impact due to energy. Nor is it prudent to establish firm pricing when the cost basis of our industry remains volatile.”

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