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Aleris mill to be fully operational soon

Keywords: Tags  Aleris, Steven Demetriou, fire, Richmond, Virginia, furnace, rolling mill, tower earnings

CHICAGO — Aleris International Inc. expects its fire-damaged plant in Richmond, Va., to be "fully operational in the next few days," chairman and chief executive officer Steven J. Demetriou said during a conference call May 9.

The Richmond facility has been "working through work-in-process inventory" and receiving metal from other Aleris rolling mills to keep up with customer shipments, Demetriou said.

Production at the Richmond facility was impaired after a fire broke out in a tower that houses the rolling mill’s furnace, Demetriou said. "Fortunately there was limited damage," he said.

The Cleveland-based company expects its adjusted earnings before interest, taxes, depreciation, and amortization (Ebitda) to be "significantly higher" in the second quarter of 2013 vs. the first quarter but still lower than in the year-ago period, Demetriou said. "This expectation takes into account any impact that may result from the temporary outage" at Richmond, he said.

A fire broke out at the Richmond plant in a tower involved in aluminum production on April 24 (, April 25). A second fire hit the facility on May 3 as workers were cleaning up from the previous blaze (, May 3).

The Richmond facility produces 3025 aluminum sheet from recycled material, which is then used to make products such as gutters, downspouts and aluminum siding.

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