Issue 7 (49)/ July 2011
All Camaro Weekend in Oshawa
It was doors wide open on June 10, 2011 at GM Canada's Oshawa Assembly Plant as over 2,000 enthusiasts from across Canada and the U.S. descended upon Oshawa to visit the official home of the Chevrolet Camaro. From Nova Scotia to Texas, Camaro owners and fans descended upon Oshawa to celebrate all things Camaro and witness where the rubber meets the road.
Camaro enthusiasts were joined by thousands more from the local community to tour the award-winning Oshawa Assembly Plant and get a first-hand look at the quality workforce and flexible manufacturing system behind the iconic Chevrolet Camaro.
"Camaro owners are some of our most passionate and loyal customers and we're thrilled to show our appreciation to them with this event," said Kevin Williams, president and managing director, General Motors of Canada. "As well, we owe a debt of gratitude to Canadians for their support, especially over the past few years, and today's plant open house is a small way we can say thank you for the chance we've been given to show what this company can really do."
In addition to today's plant tour, the Chevrolet Homecoming Weekend includes the 23rd annual Camaro Nationals event running throughout the weekend in the Oshawa Assembly Plant parking lot, hosted by the Ontario Camaro Club.
Over 587 Camaros participated in the Guinness World Record attempt to form the largest car mosaic. Reflecting true classics ranging from 1967 originals to the all-new, 2012 ZL1 making its Canadian debut, the cars were staged in a Chevrolet Bowtie configuration.
GM Oshawa Assembly Plant in numbers
- FLEX LINE: Chevrolet Camaro/Chevrolet Camaro Convertible & Buick Regal
- CONSOLIDATED LINE: Chevrolet Impala & Chevrolet Equinox
- Annual Production Volumes: 286,639 (2010)
- Shifts: Flex Line (two-shifts)/ Consolidated Line (three-shifts)
- Employment: 4,500
- Square Footage: 9.07 million square feet
- Acreage: 700 Acres
- Year Constructed: 1953
- Unions Represented: CAW Local 222
- Chevrolet Camaro Coupe Start of Regular Production: March 2009
- Chevrolet Camaro Convertible Start of Regular Production: January 2011
- Number of Camaros Built/Day: 506
- Number of Camaros Produced to Date (as of June 10th 2011): Over 228,000
- During the past eight years, Oshawa Assembly Plant has received four Gold and three Silver Awards for plant quality in North America in the annual J.D. Power and Associates Initial Quality Study
- In 2008 GM's Oshawa Assembly Plant was recognized with the prestigious J.D. Power and Associates Founder's Award in recognition of its long-standing commitment to quality excellence and a solid track record of industry leading performance
- Harbour Productivity Report ranked Oshawa Assembly within the top two plants across North America (five consecutive years)
For more information visit us online at www.gm.ca
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NEW HOS RULES WOULD HURT SMALL CARRIERS, ATA BOARD MEMBER TESTIFIESWashington, DC - The proposed changes in the Hours of Service rule would have a profoundly negative impact on small businesses, would restrict productivity and would result in greater congestion and increased emissions, the president of a 75-truck motor carrier told a House subcommittee Tuesday.
Testifying on behalf of the American Trucking Associations before the House subcommittee on Investigations, Oversight and Regulations, Jim Burg, president of James Burg Trucking Co. of Warren, Mich., said the impacts were significant because according to the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration, 99 percent of the nation's trucking companies would be classified as small businesses.
The subcommittee titled its hearing as "Do Not Enter: How Proposed Hours of Service Trucking Rules are a Dead End for Small Businesses." Burg, who is a member of the ATA Board of Directors, said that if the changes proposed by the FMCSA were implemented his truck fleet would need to "add additional trucks and drivers – and their corresponding expenses – simply to counter the loss in productivity."
"By estimates, we would need to increase our retained earnings by between 20 percent and 25 percent just to maintain our current level of financial stability," said Burg, who added that productivity losses would also "likely be felt by small business shippers, manufacturers and retailers in the form of increased costs." ATA has repeatedly said that the current rules are working and should be retained rather than changed based on political pressure.
"FMCSA's proposed changes to the Hours of Service rules are unnecessary and unjustified," Burg said. "Both safety and compliance have improved under the current regulations which have been timetested since 2003. In contrast, FMCSA's proposal to replace these rules with an untested set of regulations leaves safety to chance."
Burg said the FMCSA should abandon its proposal and retain the current HOS regulations. Subcommittee Chairman Mike Coffman, R-Colo., called into question the need for the changes, noting that since 2003, there had been a 33 percent reduction in fatal truck crashes and a 40 percent decline in truck crashes resulting in injuries. With minor exceptions, the current HOS rules have been in place since 2004. "Despite these major improvements in driver safety, the FMCSA has now proposed complicated and cumbersome travel requirements for drivers meant to increase truck safety by reducing the daily maximum driving limit, decreasing the maximum on-duty time limit, requiring mandatory breaks, and changing the current 34-hour restart provision," Coffman said in his opening statement. "The decreased instances of crashes involving commercial trucks over recent years begs the question: is this new rule really necessary?"
Ranking subcommittee member Jason Altmire, D-Penn., also questioned the need for changes in the HOS rule.
"The FMCSA has argued these changes will have a minimal impact on the transportation industry while increasing highway safety and reducing casualties," Altmire said in his opening statement. "However, to keep up with current demand, reducing drive time limits to 10 hours will require significantly more trucks and drivers on the road. This will force small businesses with scarce capital resources to hire additional drivers and buy new trucks. It is possible in today's economy that some small firms could be forced out of business as a result."
Noticeably absent from the witness list were representatives of the FMCSA and Department of Transportation.
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