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One tractor-trailer truckload of machinery and equipment out of the 15 that Wittmann Battenfeld sent to Orlando for NPE2015 didn't make it. Florida State Police on Thursday, March 12, reported that one of the trucks transporting Wittmann Battenfeld's equipment had been stolen.

Clare Goldsberry

March 13, 2015

3 Min Read
Wittmann Battenfeld loses tractor-trailer truck headed for NPE to thieves

One tractor-trailer truckload of machinery and equipment out of the 15 that Wittmann Battenfeld sent to Orlando for NPE2015 didn't make it. Florida State Police on Thursday, March 12, reported that one of the trucks transporting Wittmann Battenfeld's equipment had been stolen.

DamagedTrailer-400.jpgAccording to information from Wittmann Battenfeld, the tractor-trailer had been parked in a staging area within locked security fencing in Daytona; the trailer was connected to a brand new Peterbilt truck. When the driver came to the yard in the morning, he discovered that someone had broken through the fencing and stolen his truck and the Wittman Battenfeld trailer, containing two molding machines—an EcoPower 300 ton and a new SmartPower model that was supposed to debut at NPE2015. Also on board were a show mold, a W832 New Pro Series robot, and some display stands.

It seems that the thieves were only interested in the new Peterbilt truck, however, and ditched the trailer loaded with equipment along the side of the road. Unfortunately, they dropped it on a soft sand bank on the roadside, causing the massive weight of the equipment to tip the trailer onto its side, heavily damaging the machines.

Working fast to replace the equipment and several key pieces of the company's booth design, the team in Torrington, CT, Wittmann Battenfeld's U.S. headquarters, began making arrangements to ship another 300-ton EcoPower Servo molding machine from the company's South Elgin, IL, Tech Center; a replacement EcoPower 55-ton machine from the company's Connecticut inventory; and a new robot and display stands, also from the Connecticut headquarters. The replacement equipment and booth components left for Florida this morning.

David Preusse, President of Wittmann Battenfeld, said, "The show must go on! I'm proud of how effectively our team can act and react under pressure. It's just another test and another success story for how this team operates all the time, together and for our customers. This is the most resilient team of creative, dedicated technical staff that any manager could ever hope for. A great example of our theme for the show: Great people and great products, this is our winning combination!"

We're happy that Wittmann Battenfeld was able to move so quickly to get replacement equipment and booth components resent to Orlando. A big show like NPE is a huge undertaking for molding machinery companies, which basically set up an entire molding production floor and take it down in the space of two weeks. Not an easy task to be sure.

It reminds me of the time an injection molding press was being moved from the truck to the dock and the fork-lift dropped the press. That was quite a sight! I can't recall the machinery company who owned the press, but there was talk of them having a "scratch and dent" sale on the NPE show floor. Not a bad idea, I suppose.

And yes, the show does go on despite these glitches!

About the Author(s)

Clare Goldsberry

Until she retired in September 2021, Clare Goldsberry reported on the plastics industry for more than 30 years. In addition to the 10,000+ articles she has written, by her own estimation, she is the author of several books, including The Business of Injection Molding: How to succeed as a custom molder and Purchasing Injection Molds: A buyers guide. Goldsberry is a member of the Plastics Pioneers Association. She reflected on her long career in "Time to Say Good-Bye."

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