After suffering damage during an April 28, 2011, tornado strike, Utility Trailer Manufacturing Co.’s Glade Spring, VA, plant has returned to pre-tornado production levels.

The facility, which produces Utility’s 4000D and 4000D-X Composite dry van trailers, is one of five manufacturing plants in the U.S. for the company. Workers had been transferred to the company’s Marion, VA, plant following the tornado.

“Our workforce and managers have done a great job in working through the damage and the dislocation that was caused by the tornado,” said Jack Washburn, Utility’s Glade Spring plant manager. “The resilience and fortitude of our workers contributed to a successful full recovery and we are now back on the assembly line in full production with even more trailer orders than before the tornado damaged our facility.”

The tornado damaged the building, but did not affect any machinery. The company reopened the plant to limited operations in early May, but it has since returned to full production levels. Some of the transferred employees have chosen to stay at the Marion plant.

Utility said it is now hiring for the Glade Spring facility to meet increasing demand, including an order for more than 1,200 4000D-X trailers from Ryder Systems.

“Jack Washburn and all of our Glade Spring employees have done an astounding job with recovery efforts to get us back to pre-tornado production levels and prepare us for meeting the demands of even more trailer orders that we’ve recently received,” said Craig Bennett, Utility’s senior vice president-sales & marketing.