JFE Steel Restarts Plate Plant in Kurashiki, West Japan Works

JFE Steel’s plate plant in Kurashiki area of West Japan works recommenced the rolling in the night of February 12. The plant had suspended the operation since January 14 due to crack initiation in the housing of the rolling machine. JFE Steel had estimated it would take one and a half months for the repair and the output reduction would total approximately 250,000 tonnes. Actually it took less than 30 days to restart the operation and the output reduction was approximately 150,000 tonnes. JFE Steel had implemented alternate production at the other plate plants in Fukuyama area of West Japan works and in Keihin area of East Japan works. Thus the supply to third parties decreased only by several ten thousand tonnes during the suspension.

Steel plate production in Kurashiki area was 180,000 tonnes per month. The total production was approximately 500,000 tonnes per month at three plate plants in Kurashiki, Fukuyama and Keihin areas. JFE Steel cooperated with machine makers, especially in welding technology, to restore the cracked housing. The facility was repaired but JFE Steel considers renewal of the housing since the equipment was installed about 40 years ago.