First Alert/BRK Brands

Plastics company looks to improve its transporation logistics via remote monitoring

Kistler-Morse (KM) helps plastics company improve its transporation logistics.


First Alert, Juarez, Mexico, was faced with transportation logistics problems. They had no real time inventory data in which to schedule delivery of its HDPE pellets from a well known chemical company located in Texas as well as another facility located in Mexico. Fred Shaw, Tooling Coordinator, found that by not being able to accurately monitor material levels, they were experiencing financial losses from trucks arriving too late or too early with the product they needed for production of their smoke and carbon monoxide alarms. Because of this, they would have to send an em­ployee out to the silos to manually tape them for level readings. This caused erroneous data read­ings and was a potential hazard to the employee.


First Alert had two 30' high, 12' diameter steel silos used for receiving storage of HDPE plastic pellets. Personnel at First Alert would place an order with the chemical supplier for new product when they believed the silos were going empty. Due to mis­calculations, there were occasions that the delivery request was premature as they still had material on hand, or they had occasions where they did not order in time, and ran out of material causing a production shutdown.


KM supplied ultra-cellTM continuous level sensors that were designed specifically for the plastics industry for their silo inventory information. They also sup-plied PC based remote monitoring software to al-low First Alert's suppliers to successfully execute a Vendor Managed Inventory program with First Alert.

The First Alert purchasing agent in El Paso, TX di­als the KM PC based remote monitoring system to retrieve the silo inventory in Juarez, Mexico. He then places orders to the chemical supplier for product. The chemical supplier in Texas sends the product via railcar to El Paso, TX which then transloads into trucks and ships to Juarez, Mexico. The supplier in Mexico sends product direct to First Alert. With this system in place, they have realized im­proved efficiency in managing transportation lo­gistics for rail to truck transloading. Turn around time from order release to delivery to Juarez silos is typically within 48 hours from the Texas sup­plier. Another benefit they have experienced is excel-lent customer relations with their chemical sup-pliers by ensuring value added services to them. This has given them noticable market differentia­tion.

Finally, this has allowed the chemial suppliers to maximize their cash flow by supplying their cus­tomer with product on a real time basis and effec­tively manage their production planning and lo-g isti c requirements. Fred Shaw has appreciated KM's superior customer service and system accu racy. Fred next plans to meet with the chemical suppli­ers regarding invoicing on a silo usage basis in order to enjoy a paperless system which was not possible prior to this system installation. Contact KM at 91-40-2712-3013 or visit online at to learn more about how KM can ensure your plant receives the same World Class service as provided to First Alert/BRK Brands.