Atlas Bucket to expand, add new jobs

Published 6:00 am Tuesday, October 28, 2003

MONTICELLO — Atlas Manufacturing Company expects to add 10-15new jobs within the next year after they complete an expansion attheir facility in the industrial park.

The expansion includes an addition to the building that willallow them to be more efficient in production of industrial bucketsand traveling water screens, said Ford Wall, general manager.

“Currently the screen and bucket operations share the space wehave, and it’s a bit inefficient,” he said. “The new building willalso allow us to handle the buckets more safely. Safety is always abig issue.”

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The buckets manufactured by Atlas are large. The RoundnoseDredging Bucket, for instance, can hold 20 cubic yards of materialand weighs 76,000 lbs. empty.

The addition will add approximately 4,000 square feet to thecompany’s facility, and the roof on the addition will be raisedfrom 20 feet to 37 feet. Until now, the company has had to remove aportion of the roof and hire a crane when manufacturing certaindredging or other industrial buckets.

“The buckets require a different type of building because of theoverhead (space) for the cranes,” Wall said. “When you start hiringcranes and taking roofs off it just adds to your costs.”

The addition will allow Atlas to furnish the new area with a25-ton crane and work without removing the roof.

The expansion is made possible by a grant from the MississippiRural Impact Fund of nearly $250,000, Wall said. County supervisorsare supporting the grant by doing the dirt work on the facility.Atlas will complete the building and furnish it with the necessaryequipment.

“Without the help of the county and the supervisors we couldn’thave done what we have already,” Wall said. “The county has beengood to us and they still are.”

Once the construction is completed, he said, the company willhire 10-15 more people.

“We hope to grow in both operations,” Wall said. “We’re a youngcompany, but we’re aggressive. Although we’re the youngest companyin the screen business, we’re also the most experienced. The bucketoperation is also experiencing rapid growth with a strongreputation in the industry.”