Spirit AeroSystems Recovery Looks Good

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Recovery Continues at Spirit AeroSystems

The National Weather Service Issued a Tornado Emergency Warning for Wichita, Kansas, on April 14, 2012.  The EAS was activated and sirens wailed as a a large violent twister was confirmed on the ground.

Spirit AeroSystems was hit with what the National Weather Service has determined to be an EF-3 tornado that ravaged through Wichita.

Some buildings such as Spirit’s IPB2 Building on Oliver appear to look quite bad, but company officials have stated the far majority of production, assets and inventory is intact.  No lives were lost.  This is indeed good news for not only Spirit AeroSystems, but their employees, suppliers and customers, including Boeing and Airbus, as Spirit is in a unique position as the world’s largest supplier of commercial airplane assemblies & components.

Spirit IPB2 Building at Oliver Street | Photo: Copyright Spirit AeroSystems

Initial assessments indicate that damage is primarily limited to infrastructure, including buildings and utilities, and that production equipment appears to be largely unaffected.

Despite the initial assessments, Spirit AeroSystems is in full recovery mode cleaning up from the April 14 twister.

The company has made great progress with the clean-up and despite structural damage.  In fact, Spirit is advising most suppliers to keep building and confidence is gaining by the hour.

Electricity has been restored to all substations and other utilities are being restored.  According to Spirit AeroSystems CEO, Jeff Turner, the key is to make the infrastructure safe to return to production.

Spirit 737 Assembly Plant II - Wichita, Kansas | Photo: Copyright Spirit AeroSystems

Senior Vice President, Spirit AeroSpace, David Coleal, is also optimistic, stating Spirit’s equipment and products are in good shape.

Parts of the facility, such as the Spirit 737 Assembly Plant II, as pictured above, appear in great shape along with the aircraft fuselages.

Operations are suspended at least through Tuesday, April 17, 2012, to ensure the safety of our people, complete our damage evaluation, and finalize plans for systematically bringing production online. The company expects near-term production disruptions, including delivery impacts as recovery plans are executed.

Turner said in a company press release, “We are thankful that none of our employees were injured in this event, and we continue to remain focused on safety as we assess damage and execute our recovery plans.”  Turner added, “We are also working closely with our customers to minimize the expected delivery impacts.”

Spirit AeroSpace Customers include aircraft giant Boeing and Airbus.  Spirit builds many important components for customers including Boeing from aircraft fuselage to cockpits.

Steve Richardson, FlyersPulse.com Director and Editor said, “Thankfully there were no injuries.  As an important Aerospace Company in the heart of the United States, I hope they’re able to return to production as soon as safely possible.”

This years tornado season in the United States has been unusually active; it is still early in the severe weather season and we’ve already had multiple PDS (Particularly Dangerous Situation) Tornado Watches issued, along with major tornadoes across the Ohio Valley and Southern United States.

Steve Richardson, Louisville, Kentucky, and Matthew Smith, on-site in Wichita, contributed to this report.

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