Safelite to Open New Distribution Center in Ontario, Calif.
June 17, 2009

Safelite Auto Glass is opening a new, eco-friendly distribution center in Ontario, Calif. The distribution center will be parent company Belron's largest in the world, and will open officially with a grand-opening event on July 15.

The new 282,000-square-foot distribution center will feature compact, fluorescent T5 lighting; motion and daylight sensors; skylights on 5 percent of the roof to allow for natural lighting; rechargeable, energy-efficient electric forklift trucks; motion sensors in office space that turn off lights when offices are empty; motion sensors in bathrooms to conserve water; and corrugated cardboard and wood pallet recycling. It will support the company's distribution to the states west of the Mississippi River.

The company expects the facility to employ 35 initially and 90 total as volume increases.

The facility will complement the company's main distribution center in Enfield, N.C., which will now focus on distribution for the Eastern portion of the United States. The Enfield facility will continue to manufacture windshields for distribution throughout the country.
Safelite recently began making efforts at its Enfield facility as well to become greener, and, for the last six months, has had a packaging engineer on site to focus on this effort in the area of packaging.

"We're trying to reduce the [use of] Styrofoam," says Rich Glover, assistant vice president of manufacturing and distribution. The company now aims to use recyclable cardboard packaging and recycled wooden crates and also has begun installing fluorescent T5 lighting at the Enfield facility and employing motion sensors, so that lights are activated as necessary to save energy, as they will be at the Ontario facility.

Be sure to look to the July/August issue of AGRR for an in-depth look at the Enfield facility.

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