Big fire another blow to long time company
The loss through fire of a standalone Acma Industries building on Friday evening has rocked company owner John Bowmar.
The Montgomery Cr fire came just weeks after the sudden passing of Alan Bowmar, John’s father and the man who set up the company almost 40 years ago.
One of Bowmar Snr’s last projects had been setting up a carpet underlay section three years ago.
It was this single story, 1500 square metre building behind Acma’s other leased properties, that was razed. The building contained carpet underlay made with polyurethane foam.
This made huge plumes of smoke which were visible across much of Upper Hutt.
The company’s 40 employees were shocked by the incident but were trying to work as normal, John Bowmar said on Monday.
‘‘The main moulding factory is running as usual but everyone is a bit upset.’’
Bowmar arrived at the factory 20 minutes after the fire was reported to emergency services by a passer-by.
He praised the work of firefighters who were able to contain the blaze to the one building. ’’They did an excellent job,’’ he said.
The cause of the fire remains to be identified.
The company was fully insured with plant, stock and business interruption insurance, Bowmar said.
Upper Hutt mayor Wayne Guppy said the council would help Acma in any way it could in its recovery.
‘‘It is a family business. They’re great people who have been successful through hard work,’’ Guppy said.
When Alan Bowmar founded Acma in 1978, it was to produce foam seating and head rests for the automotive industry. Its major customer was General Motors at Trentham.
It produces a range of low and high density foam which is moulded into various products and exported to a range of countries.
In 2015 Acma Industries was inducted into the Wellington Region Business Hall of Fame.