July 1, 2020
Happy 4th of July
Know the risks and be responsible as you celebrate Independence Day this weekend
As COVID-19 cases spike in states across the South (see more information below), let’s work together this holiday weekend and beyond to keep our families and communities healthy and our worksites and local union offices open.

We can do this by practicing preventive measures both on and off jobsites and by encouraging each other to follow guidelines by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, state and local health officials and governments, and employers.

To make the best choices, you need to understand how COVID-19 spreads, know what activities increase risk and what measures reduce risk, and be aware of the level of COVID-19 spread in your community. Many answers can be found on this CDC web page and through COVID-19-related resources referenced later in this newsletter.

The CDC offers this basic advice:

  • In general, the more closely you interact with others and the longer that interaction, the higher the risk of COVID-19 spread.
  • If you decide to engage in public activities, continue to protect yourself by practicing everyday preventive actions.
  • Keep these items on hand when venturing out: a cloth face covering, tissues, and a hand sanitizer with at least 60% alcohol.
How to properly wear and care for cloth face coverings
Face masks are part of life right now and are necessary on many jobsites. OSHA and the CDC have some great information and tips on properly wearing and maintaining masks. Check it out here .

CDC: Why cloth face coverings help prevent COVID-19 spread
Recent studies  show individuals with COVID-19 can transmit the virus to others before showing symptoms or even if they never develop symptoms. Wearing a cloth face covering will help protect people around you, including those at higher risk of severe illness from COVID-19.
July local union meetings to be held with COVID-19 precautions
Most local unions in the SSMRC's district will hold July meetings as scheduled. Local 1192's meeting has been moved to July 9 at 7 p.m.

Face masks and social distancing will be required at all meetings.
Local 1263 used COVID-19-related precautions when conducting a specially called meeting for officer elections.
SSMRC purchases HYTORC kits for training centers
Nashville, Tennessee
Moss Point, Mississippi
Seven HYTORC hydraulic bolting kits purchased by the SSMRC have begun arriving at training centers across the council’s 11-state district. Previously, training centers had to rent such kits from the United Brotherhood of Carpenters International Training Center and arrange classes according to equipment availability.
“Each area having one of these kits will allow us to continue our up-to-date training on our schedule,” says Ed Wright, training director of the Arkansas/Oklahoma Carpenter Apprenticeship Training & Trust Fund. Wright spearheaded the kit purchases.
Instructors and students are using the HYTORC kits at training centers in Nashville, Tennessee, Moss Point, Mississippi, Tampa, Florida, Russellville, Arkansas, Arlington, Texas, Houston, Baton Rouge, Louisiana, and Augusta, Georgia.
While hydraulic-bolting skills are important in all industries millwrights serve, they are critical to disassembly and reassembly of turbines in the nuclear and petrochemical fields. The two-day HYTORC course is one of three courses that are prerequisites for attending GE gas turbine training at the ITC in Las Vegas. That training is required for millwrights working at certain jobsites.

Why continue your training?
Success today means doing new things and embracing new ways to keep pace with the evolving construction industry. We are known for responding quickly to industry innovations, and it all starts with training. Our training programs are developed so that our millwrights meet any challenge or opportunity encountered by our employers. Southern States Millwrights are the only construction professionals in this region with access to this consistent, standardized, quality training.

Click here to locate a training facility in your area and see course schedules. (Please note schedules are subject to change due to the COVID-19 Pandemic.)
City Council approves construction of Nashville-area training center
With a 5-2 vote, the La Vergne, Tennessee, City Council approved construction of the new Nashville training center on Tuesday. An architect presented plans for the facility, and SSMRC EST Wayne Jennings, training director Greg Williams, and Local 1554 business agent Steve Williams attended multiple meetings to address city council concerns.

Slated for completion in mid-2021, the new Nashville training center will host mechatronics classes. Staff also plan to add light-conveyor classes and props to the center's curriculum.
Check out COVID-19 risks in your county
The Harvard Global Health Institute released a new tool today that allows you to see a COVID-19 risk rating of green, yellow, orange, or red for the county where you live. Click the map above, then hover over a county for detailed information.
Coronavirus cases rising across Southern States Millwrights' district
COVID-19 cases are increasing in all 11 states the Southern States Millwright Regional Council covers. Click here to learn more about case numbers, deaths, and the rate of increase in your state.
See how your state is re-opening or pausing or reversing plans to re-open
Due to rising COVID-19 case counts, several states in our region are pausing or reversing plans to re-open. Click the map above for details about your state's status and restrictions. Be aware city and county orders are affecting many areas as well. Check with your local governments to find out if additional rules apply.
Regional work updates
Western Region:
Local 216
There is a project kicking off at Good Year in Oklahoma this week. We did have some projects postponed due to COVID issues. In Arkansas the major expansion at the Nucor steel mill will kick off on July 8th. This project will eventually have over 40 millwrights on site.
Local 729
Work is slow at the moment but Local 729 is preparing for the upcoming nuclear outage at Waterford so members who are interested should contact Mike Hines.
Local 1421
A project for Owens Corning is finishing up this week and another is about to kick off. The MHS project at the United Parcel Services facility in Arlington is still going strong as well.
Local 2232
Local 2232 will be placing over 150 millwrights out at Toyota for a July shutdown. There are still some petrochemical projects ongoing and maintenance work seems to be picking up although most projects are working modified schedules to increase social distancing with the crews.

Central Region:

Work has been slow, but is picking up. The July 4 holiday is upon us, and automotive outage work will be ramping up across the region. If you are available for work, please put yourself on the out-of-work list and contact your local business representative.

Eastern Region:
Local 1000
  • Western Industrial is working on a DHL project.
  • Preferred Maintenance has a small shut down at SAPPA.
  • Work with Walbridge at the Amazon facility is ongoing.
  • There is airport work in Ft. Lauderdale, Tampa, Orlando, and Miami.
  • GCI and Central Maintenance have work at the Big Bend outage.
  • Siemens is working at Sanford.

Local 1263
  • More than 65 members are working with Western Industrial at FedEx Ground in Ellenwood, Georgia, and we will start another FedEx Ground job with Western Industrial in Kennesaw, Georgia, on July 6.
  • Cleveland has expansion at Toyo Tire in Cartersville, Georgia, at the end of July.
  • CR Meyer is working at First Quality in Anderson, South Carolina.
  • RCC and TurbinePROs are at Georgia Power’s Plant Vogtle Units 3 and 4 construction project. The job is continuing with the precautions noted below due to COVID-19 cases among workers.

Additional information for Vogtle workers:

Local 2411
  • WW Gay is at US Gypsum, GP Perry, Rayonier and GP Palatka and at Duke Energy in Gainesville.
  • Milton J Wood is finishing up at US Gypsum, International Paper Port Wentworth, and GP Palatka.
  • Coker Industrial is at Columbia Grain and WestRock in Fernandina and Jacksonville and at Rayonier in Fernandina.
  • APM has small outages at JEA energy Stations.
  • Siemens is finishing a generator replacement at Gainesville Regional Utilities in Deerhaven.
  • Outages at paper mills have been postponed because of COVID-19 and will be rescheduled.
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We know keeping up with email is tough. If you would like to receive text messages with links to SSMRC Member E-News and other member information, please text SSMRC to 855-57-SSMRC (855-577-7672).