Great Dane’s manufacturing facility in Terre Haute, Ind. recently celebrated the completion of its 100,000th trailer. The 17-year old plant was the site of a ceremony and press conference on Wednesday, Feb. 1, to commemorate the milestone.
“When our 100,000th trailer rolled off the production line, there was an immediate, overwhelming sense of achievement for Great Dane and the outstanding products we build here and also a feeling of accomplishment for our people,” said Cory Lookebill, plant manager at Great Dane’s Terre Haute facility. “Hundreds of employees come here every day because they are dedicated hard-working Americans who take pride in their work and being part of the Great Dane family. That deep sense of pride is what makes American manufacturing companies and products the very best in the world.”
Great Dane’s 565,000-square-foot manufacturing facility in Terre Haute started up in April 1995 with a single production line. A second line was added just a few months later to keep up with demand for the dry freight vans built there. Nearly 2,700 trailers were completed during the first year of operation.
Today, Great Dane’s Terre Haute plant employs more than 450 people and builds more than 8,000 trailers annually for some of the nation’s largest fleets, including Estes Express, UPS and Celadon Group Inc. The 100,000th trailer to come off the line was an all-new Champion CP freight van built especially for Celadon, a customer of Great Dane’s since the early 1990s.
“We consider ourselves very fortunate to have such a solid longstanding partnership with Great Dane,” said Paul Will, vice chairman, president and chief operating officer at Celadon Group Inc. “They are a vital component in Celadon’s mission to provide top-quality equipment to our customers and maintain one of the youngest fleets in the industry. Our relationship is made even more special with the 100,000th Great Dane trailer being built by Hoosiers right here in our home state. Celadon has made a commitment to support and grow the Hoosier economy wherever possible, and we could not be more pleased to have such a valued partner as Great Dane right here in Indiana. We congratulate Great Dane on this momentous milestone, and we thank them for their unwavering dedication to our business.”
The Terre Haute manufacturing facility has the capacity to build the Champion SE and CP dry van models.