Ironworkers face harsh conditions in blast furnace
An Israeli blast furnace, which produced millions of tons of iron a year before the collapse of the Soviet Union, is still used by some Israeli ironmakers, the Ironworkers’ Union said on Tuesday.
The ironworkers’ union said the blast furnace in Beit Dagan, near Tel Aviv, was dismantled in September after it produced more than one million tons of steel per year.
The union said it filed a complaint with the Israeli Civil Administration and the Israeli Railways in October about the factory, which has been in operation since at least 2003.
The factory was decommissioned in 2012.
The blast furnace has been used by a number of Israeli iron manufacturers including Energi, the company that manufactures the high-tech steel used in the U.S. and Europe’s Boeing 787 Dreamliner.
Energio has been a subcontractor for the Israel Iron Works since 2013.
Energias founder and chairman Shimon Peres told the Associated Press that the blast furnaces at Beit Din were built for a number that did not meet the company’s specifications.
Peres said the factory was built to meet Energies requirements for steel in a very short time.
He said it was not possible for him to give a timeline on how long the blast units would be in use.
Israel Ironworks, which employs nearly 3,000 workers, had about 5,000 tons of output a year, according to the union.
Peers’ company is one of a handful of major Israeli firms that are currently under scrutiny by Israel’s labor ministry after they failed to meet production targets.
In September, the Labor Ministry ordered that Israel Ironworkers Inc., the company behind the plant, cease production.
Peeras has said that Energs production was up to about 7,000 pounds a year when he took over in the early 2000s.
Pees said that the company had invested more than $1 billion in upgrading the facility.
He did not respond to an AP inquiry about the company.
The labor ministry said the company should repay the labor union for the money.
“The company was able to meet its production targets in the past but its performance has not been satisfactory,” said ministry spokesman Avi Fidler.
“This is unacceptable.
This is a serious matter.
This company should be investigated and held accountable for its actions.”
Energes plant also produced the steel used for the 787 planes and other high-end aircraft, according the union’s report.
Peis said that he did not know the exact weight of the iron and that the production plant is now in the process of upgrading its machines and equipment.
He has not returned AP calls.