State of Ohio May Support Alcoa Press Repairs

Feb. 13, 2009
Officials are talking with the company about assisting with the $68 million repair bill for a 50,000-ton hydraulic press.

Readers of the Cleveland’s major newspaper, the Plain Dealer, were exposed to a detailed explanation about what has happened to the 50,000-ton hydralic forging press at Alcoa’s Cleveland Works in the Feb. 12 edition. The business section featured a large diagram of the press and exactly where cracks have been discovered in steel plates at its base.

Maintenance workers reportedly discovered the cracks in late August and the press was shut down. The press had been turning out large aerospace forgings for a variety of aircraft, including the F-35 Joint Strike Force fighter.

The 10-story-tall press was built more than 50 years ago. One of several forging presses at the plant, it at times has been operated 24 hours a day, six days a week. It would have to be disassembled to be repaired.

The PD article quoted Kelly Schlissberg, of Ohio’s development department, as saying, “What we are doing is holding ongoing discussions with Alcoa regarding this press project. We anticipate the opportunity to help them repair the press. We recognize what kind of asset the machine is to the state and region.”

Alcoa’s Cleveland Works employs more than 1,000 workers.