News from the Industry
• Lustra™ Professional Car Care Products of DePere, WI, has signed on D-S Car Wash Inc. as an authorized distributor for the Seattle area.
D-S has been in business since 1989 and is also a distributor for Hanna, Ryko and MacNeil. The company currently services more than 250 carwashes within the Pacific Northwest region.
Ralph Leyba, a sales consultant for D-S, stated in a company press release, "I am looking forward to working with Lustra and their regional sales manager, Rob Raskell. Lustra's Ultraflex® system of ultra concentrated solutions brings a new dimension to the carwash industry and provides a pathway for a safer work environment for all carwash associates and a much more efficiently organized chemical storage system."
Rob Raskell also stated in the press release, "We are excited that we have signed on such an established distributor in the Seattle market. We believe this will solidify our commitment to this region."
Lustra also announced the addition of an authorized manufacturer's rep in the northwestern U.S. including Alaska. Charter Industrial Supply, LLC is based in Seattle, WA, and the company's president, Chuck Trester, has been servicing carwash operators for over 25 years.
"I am excited to be able to join the Lustra distribution team and to have the opportunity to combine my high level of service with the quality of Lustra products," Trester said in a company press release.
"The introduction of the new Ultraflex system provides a very positive and enjoyable experience to bring to all operators."
Raskell added, "Chuck knows how to put the customer's needs as his highest priority. We are very excited to have such a qualified partner to help us to continue to grow the Western and Mid-Washington state markets."
And finally, Lustra™ also announced the appointment of Starwash Italia as the distributor for its Italian customer base.
Starwash Italia, which was founded in 1996, is owned by Enrico Mariotto, who is an architect and has developed carwashes for independent investors. He is also credited with introducing the automated touchless H.P. Jet Wash system.
Bomi Zarolia, vice president for Lustra International Sales, stated in a press release, "We are very pleased to continue our relationship with Enrico and his company to better serve his customers."
• A one-of-a-kind automatic carwash designed to clean a fleet of city vehicles is now up and running in Barrie, Ontario, Canada. The wash features a drive-through design created to meet the challenge of washing up to 200 city vehicles per day, ranging in size from sedans to dual-wheel ambulances.
The wash was engineered and installed by MacNeil Wash Systems, and it was commissioned by the York Regional Emergency Medical Services.
"MacNeil capitalized on the strengths of our existing equipment and custom engineered it to fit the physical size, distinct profile and dual wheels of the ambulances," said Brad Laurier, vice president of MacNeil's Canadian Sales. "MacNeil is very proud to be involved with this project and to be awarded the opportunity to provide a system that not only meets, but exceeds our customers' expectations."
• DRB Systems of Akron, OH, announced it had shipped its 500,000th FastPass tag. The tags are stickers placed on vehicle windshields that are read wirelessly as drivers pull up to SiteWatch pay stations. The entire transaction process takes less than three seconds to complete with FastPass, saving time for customers and increasing carwash productivity, according to a company press release.
A key factor in the popularity of FastPass has been the increasing use of monthly pass programs. The tags are used to identify vehicles of customers belonging to unlimited monthly pass programs, the release stated.
• Cleaning Systems Inc. (CSI) of DePere, WI, the manufacturer of Lustra® Professional Car Care Products and DynaEdge®, announced its plans for a zero waste initiative. The company plans to recycle, repurpose or reuse more than 90 percent of their current waste by the end of next year.
"As daunting as it initially appeared, we learned very quickly that there is a demand for the manufacturing byproducts we generate making reaching our goal achievable," Rick Martens, senior chemist for CSI, said in a press release. "We have been recycling paper, cardboard, metal and plastic for many years. What we assumed to be waste and not recyclable turns out to be appropriate for repurposing for development into alternative fuel for industries."
Martens also said that the majority of their waste comes from packaging materials.
• Kaady Chemical of San Leandro, CA, has renovated and updated its website, found at www.kaadychemical.com.
The new website was prompted by the company's expanded product line and new customer service capabilities.
Now, visitors are greeted with easier navigation, full-line videos and more product information.
• Shurhold Industries of Palm City, FL, participated with Lauren Fix and The Car Care Council in a national television tour.
The tour coincided with Fall Car Care Month in October. During the tour, Fix explained the benefits of surface restoration to help maintain the value of a vehicle.
Fix demonstrated the benefits using a Shurhold polisher and a metal polish.
Barry Berhoff, president of Shurhold Industries, said, "Lauren has demonstrated a high trust factor and can connect with viewers everywhere."
Fix is the spokesperson for the council's "Be Car Care Aware" program, a consumer education campaign promoting the benefits of regular vehicle care, maintenance and repair.
• Members of the Car Wash Operators of New Jersey (CWONJ) met on Nov. 8 at the Crowne Plaza in Monroe, NJ, to learn about how to handle an OSHA (Occupational Safety and Health Administration) audit. The membership meeting also included an update on the CWONJ Groupon program.
Michael Yarnell, who started working for OSHA in 1974 as an industrial hygienist, told members about what to do when OSHA comes calling and what every owner and operator should have on hand. Mark Wadiak, an assistant director in the New Jersey Department of Labor & Workforce Development, also spoke to members about OSHA visits.
The 2012 officer slate was also voted in, and officers for next year include: President Al Villani, Vice President Mike Conte, Treasurer Mike Prudente, Secretary Mario Mendoza and Immediate Past President Gerry Barton. Board members voted in for 2012 include: Richie Boudakian, Scott Freund, Bill Howell, George Ribeiro, Doug Rieck, Steve Switzer and Mark Toriello.
• The Connecticut Carwash Association (CCA) rang out a tough 2011 with a festive holiday gathering at the Bin 300 World Bistro in Wolcott, CT on December 1.
"The holiday gathering is a really special event for our members," said CCA President Todd Whitehouse. "It's great to see everyone and ring in what we all hope will be a profitable year of washing cars."
Whitehouse also gave thanks to attendees who had worked hard to keep the sales tax at bay. He credited their victory with their strong grassroots effort from all of the operators and members involved.
The CCA's next event is its 23rd Mini Expo, which will take place March 30 at the Marriott Courtyard in Cromwell. For vendor/attendee information visit www.wewashctcars.com or call 800-287-6604.