UPDATE (8:40 a.m): Bumping this to the top of the page because we garbled the company’s name in the original post. Apologies to KME.
John Kovatch III, now president and CEO of KME Fire Apparatus — part of of the Kovatch group of companies — shows us the ins and outs of manufacturing custom firetrucks and other fire-fighting apparatus in this week’s Cool Stuff Being Made, a video from 2005. The company is another family business starting small, growing and expanding. As this feature story at Bystronic explains:
Kovatch Mobile Equipment Corporation, headquartered in Nesquehoning, Pennsylvania, builds custom-designed fire trucks, rescue trucks, industrial foam vehicles and aircraft refuelers….[Spirited] visionary, John “Sonny” Kovatch began his business as a modest two-car repair shop in 1946. Since then, with eleven manufacturing plants at this facility, annual production reaching 300-325 units and orders flowing in from around the world, this family owned and operated company stands as the largest privately held manufacturer of customized specialty vehicles in the United States.
Computer design, metal fabricating, custom painting, plumbing, etc. — there’s a lot that goes into building firefighting apparatus, including one we see in the video, a 2,000-gallons-a-minute pumping unit. And at KME, customers come to the facility to inspect their purchases.
And if you’re in the Harrisburg area in the middle of May, drop by the Fire Expo 2008. KME and many other great companies will be well represented.
Thanks again to PCN for supplying the NAM with a consistent flow of consistently interesting videos on manufacturing in Pennsylvania.
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