The Materials Processing Institute has reopened its Normanton Steel Plant, allowing it to resume steelmaking production and support major research projects.
The Teesside-based facility produces steel and specialist alloys for new product development and process refinement, as well as generating income through its specialist commercial smelting business.
It produces a range of precision steel products including carbon, alloy, and stainless steels. The institute suspended operations in March because it was hard for the production team to maintain social distancing during operations.
Risk assessments have been carried out and the staff undertook a four-week training process to implement safety procedures that allowed the plant to resume production safely.
The not-for-profit research and innovation centre, along with the Normanton Steel Plant, plays a major role in several major research and development projects.
Chris McDonald, the Institute’s Chief Executive, said: “We are very much used to operating safely in a high-risk environment, working with molten steel and heavy machinery.
“Initially we realised our staff in the Normanton Plant were unable to carry out their traditional ways of working while maintaining social distancing, so we took the decision to suspend plant operations.
“We carried out risk assessments and established new working practices that allowed the plant to resume its valuable research role along with steel production for our clients.
“We are well used to dealing with risks in the workplace and the threat of coronavirus is just one more that must be overcome.”
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