September 26, 2018 / 6:29 AM / 9 months ago

Elementis sees modest hit to FY earnings on North Carolina plant shutdown

(Reuters) - British specialty chemicals maker Elementis said production at its chromium facility in Castle Hayne, North Carolina had been disrupted by Hurricane Florence that battered parts of the state this month, modestly hitting its 2018 earnings.

The facility did not suffer any significant structural damage, but flooding around it stopped production and Elementis said the plant should return to production next month.

Hurricane Florence has caused flooding in parts of North Carolina and left residents struggling to recover from the epic storm.

“The shutdown of the facility was well managed and we anticipate production to restart as conditions in the surrounding area return to normal over the coming weeks,” Chief Executive Paul Waterman said in a statement.

However, rain-swollen rivers in North and South Carolina kept rising on Sunday and were forecast to remain flooded for days, the National Weather Service said more than a week after the landfall of Hurricane Florence, already blamed for at least 40 deaths.

Elementis, which is buying Amsterdam-based Mondo to expand into talc additives, said trading across the rest of the group were in line with expectations.

Other companies with operation in the region have also been impacted and Duke Energy Corp said last week that breaches in a cooling lake dam forced it to shut down its natural gas-fired L.V. Sutton plant in North Carolina.

RMS, a risk modeling and analytics firm, said on Monday insured losses from Hurricane Florence will range from $2.8 billion to $5 billion.

Reporting by Noor Zainab Hussain in Bengaluru; Editing by Gopakumar Warrier

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