Glass Companies Struggle to Re-Coup From Ike's Impact
Just as homeowners in Houston are struggling to recover from Hurricane
Ike, so too, are area businesses.
At Vitro America's Houston branch Terri Gilmore, sales manager,
says the company is working by way of a generator; only three computers
and one printer are working. Gilmore says the company sold stock
sheets yesterday and will be making deliveries today, though they
may take a little longer than usual because of the gasoline shortage.
|A building maintenance worker walks over shattered
glass from windows blown out by Hurricane Ike on the JPMorgan
Chase tower Saturday, Sept. 13, 2008 in Houston. (AP Photo/David
"Some fuel lines have a two- to three-hour wait and then they
may run out before you get gas," Gilmore said. "We do
not know when we will have power or phone service. No one can tell
Columbia Commercial Building Products, which is headquartered in
Rockwall, Texas, has a facility in Houston. The branch did not undergo
a great amount of damage, but has no power or phone service. Kelly
Townsend, national sales director, says all calls and faxes to the
Houston location have been forwarded to Rockwall where they are
able to monitor inventory control.
"We then call the Houston branch via cell phone to have them
pull the order. Customers have to pick up the orders," says
Townsend, who explains they foresaw this might be a concern.
"We sent the stocking truck there last Wednesday that would
normally have gone [later] so we could make sure that facility had
all the supplies it needed," says Townsend. "We're getting
a lot of glass companies calling in to place orders today."
He adds that they'll be running another stocking truck to Houston
either Friday or Monday.
Likewise, the Houston operations of Hollander Glass are also struggling
to operate without power. Pierre Portman, president, says since
Monday they've been coming in to answer phones and faxes, but have
to leave early each day because they are running off of a small
"We have other locations [throughout the country] and when
we can we're shipping small orders from those branches," says
Portman, who adds he's been given no indication as to when power
might be restored.
"They [the power company] won't tell us anything but that
they are working on it," says Portman. "It could be any
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