Three submissions from County Materials were selected as winners in the 2019 American Concrete Pipe Association (ACPA) Chairman’s Quality Awards. A diverse panel of ten industry judges selected County Materials as a winner in three out of five total categories.
The ACPA Chairman’s Quality Awards recognizes concrete pipe manufacturing companies that have implemented successful quality initiatives resulting in a product of repeated excellence. County Materials won in each of the following three categories, Quality Control Innovation, Individual Plant Process Improvement, and Company Wide Best Practices. Also, County Materials had another submission named as a finalist in the Individual Plant Process Improvement category.
In the Quality Control Innovation category, County Materials’ Charleston, IL, location won 2nd place for a “Manhole Snatcher” device. The manhole snatcher is a custom-made lifting device that uses the product’s weight for secure attachment that enables faster and safer moving of manhole bases, extended bases, and risers, and reduces handling damage during initial yarding, transfer, and loading. The manhole snatcher is faster, eliminating the risk of damage or a manhole section falling off the forks or swaying on chains.
In the Company Wide Improvement category, County Materials’ Astatula, FL, location was recognized for its adoption of a gasket management system, which won 2nd place. The gasket management system expedites the shipping and returns process for the company’s drivers. In this system, a team member assembles a tied gasket bundle in a designated area for drivers. Trucks are then able to pull up to the gasket area and immediately be equipped with the gasket load, facilitating faster assembly of each load.
The Astatula location also won 3rd place in the Quality Innovation category for its “Spigot Go/No-Go Ring Gauge.” The gauge is an all-in-one ring, which confirms that diameters are within target tolerance at 360 degrees (versus at single points like traditional go/no-go rods). This device speeds up the quality control process and ensures a more accurate measure of pipe quality.
“Product quality is a vital part of our continued success in the marketplace,” said Chuck Curry, County Materials Quality Control Manager for Pipe & Precast. “Innovations such as these increase our efficiencies in-house while ensuring the highest levels of performance and resiliency in the field. With quality best practices, concrete drainage products have no rival.”
County Materials received recognition at an awards luncheon held during the 2020 Pipe School in San Marcos, TX, on January 9th, 2020. The plants were also awarded ACPA medals displaying these industry achievements. Participating in this annual competition demonstrates County Materials’ Vision of Success, Stability and Support, and a commitment to product quality and continuous improvement in the concrete manufacturing industry.