The company reported that all of the Panama City mill’s employees have been accounted for and are safe.
As previously reported, the company’s mill in Panama City received extensive damage from Hurricane Michael. Due to the efforts of employees, contractors, vendors, the company’s insurance carrier and government officials, WestRock has already made substantial progress in assessing the damage and implementing required repairs to return the mill to operation.
The company expects the linerboard production system to return to full production capacity within 30 days of Oct. 18. Market pulp production is expected to begin by the end of November, but will likely be limited to no more than 50% of the mill’s market pulp production capacity for an estimated period of approximately 6 months. The mill has a normal annual production capacity of 353,000 tons of linerboard and 292,000 tons of market pulp.
The total cost to the company from Hurricane Michael is currently unknown. While the company maintains property damage and business interruption insurance coverage, there will be a time lag between the initial incurrence of costs and the receipt of insurance proceeds as the company restores the mill back to normal operations.
WestRock will provide an additional update on the status of the mill on its Nov. 5, 2018, earnings conference call.
Image courtesy WestRock