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PPG facility shutdown after power failure

PITTSBURGH (AP) -- PPG Industries Inc. said Friday that a power failure resulted in a production shutdown at one of its facilities in Louisiana late last month, reducing earnings at its commodity chemicals business.

The Pittsburgh-based coatings maker said that a major generator transformer failure on Nov. 28 resulted in an electrical disruption and the subsequent shutdown of its entire chlor-alkali complex in Lake Charles, La. No chemicals were released and no plant workers were hurt, the company said.

PPG said the plant resumed partial operations two days later, but damaged electrical equipment continues to reduce the amount of power the facility can produce internally, forcing the company to buy outside power.

Repairs to the plant's electrical system are expected to take between four and six weeks. PPG said it's currently meeting customer demand and expects to continue to do so while the repairs are being made.

PPG said that lost sales and expenses related to the shutdown, along with external power purchases and equipment repairs, will likely reduce fourth-quarter profit at the company's commodity chemical business by $4 million to $8 million.

PPG shares fell $1.55 to $121.66 in morning trading.