INDIANAPOLIS (Oct. 13) — Air spring manufacturer Firestone Industrial Products Co. is declaring force majeure for all customers effective immediately as a result of Hurricanes Katrina and Rita and their effect on the supply chain.
The company, a business unit of BFS Diversified Products L.L.C., expects that product deliveries will begin to be affected within the next 15-20 business days, and that it may be at least several weeks before shipments return to normal levels. Certain products will be affected more than others due to a heavier reliance on the specific raw materials that are in short supply, Firestone said.
The firm will undertake a fair and reasonable allocation to its customers of its available inventory and of new product once manufactured.
Some of Firestone´s key suppliers have advised it that, due to "force majeure" circumstances, they are suspending deliveries of necessary raw materials.
The hurricanes severely damaged several petroleum-chemical businesses in the Gulf Coast region, and many have not had power or raw materials for weeks, Firestone said. Since these plants have not been operational, many other industries are now experiencing shortages of many key materials that are typically manufactured in the impacted region.
These materials are needed to manufacture many products, including Firestone air springs, the company said.