Seven Months after devastating fire, Classic and Rattler Ropes are back producing
After nearly seven months of rebuilding what was left of the rope factory burnt to ashes, Classic and Rattler ropes took rope orders from retail partners for the first time on Monday, June 20.
On Nov. 30, 2015 at 4:00 a.m. a fire started and destroyed the 70,000-square-foot rope manufacturing facility despite the efforts of nearly 50 firefighters. The fire goes on record as being one of the largest in Hood County’s history and thankfully there were no injuries. While the ashes were still smoldering, plans were implemented for the rebuilding process. All 74 employees of the facility were promised no loss in wages, and the mass clean up began. After a thorough investigation of what started fire, the Hood County Fire Marshall deemed the results inconclusive.
By January of 2016, string and fiber production commenced in the only structure on the property that did not burn and shortly after, the fabrication team began working on the production of the first and only ones of its kind rope machines. At the end of March, down from the count of eight, two machines were fully operational and prototypes were developed and tested by a select group of professional ropers. Even through this devastating castrophe, Equibrand is very thankful for the support of the consumers, retailers, professionals, and industry partners.
Ken Bray, CEO of Equibrand, said, “We are humbled by the outpouring of support from our customers and industry partners. We understand our responsibility is to exceed expectation.”
On Monday, June 20, 2016 the first rope orders to retail partners were made for the first time since the fire. Quantities and selection of only Heats and GT4’s were limited at time of purchase. The machines are running day and night to get production back up and crews are working tirelessly to get the remaining machines built to get stock back in every rope. This is just the first phase of the Firestorm.
Equibrand is a holding company for several premium branded products in the western performances equestrian industry.
Hannah Haugen, Public Relations Coordinator
800-654-7864 ext. 4143