Switching Gears In Troubling Times

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Switching Gears In Troubling Times

How Cat® dealers and Cat Racing are adjusting during the COVID-19 crisis

This is the time of year when you’re used to seeing the No. 8 tearing up the track. You might see Tyler Reddick and other drivers trying to keep sharp doing virtual iRacing. But with our current situation putting the season on hold, the team is playing the waiting game. Their success is about quickness, agility and teamwork… qualities we’re seeing from Cat® dealers as they help support those handling the COVID-19 epidemic.

In Seattle, at Century Link Field, this is the time of year when they’d be starting up the MLS Seattle Sounders season. Instead, the Army Corps of Engineers worked with a Cat customer to turn parts of the adjacent events center into a hospital with great support from their dealer, N C Machinery.

“The Army wants to do certain things, but every single hour it changes and expands said Jared Baker, salesman for N C Power Systems. They just need somebody that knows what they’re talking about with power. We’re all learning together. It’s whatever they need to support patients and we’re here to support them.”

Moving to Southern California, Cat Rental Power is doing what it can with, Riverside County Emergency Services’ screening trailer and quarantine trailer. From there, Quinn Power Systems Rental/Sales Area Manager Jason Wondolleck reached out to their counterparts in San Bernardino County.

“They called us on a Monday morning and wanted everything hooked up by that night, Wondolleck said. Our whole team got together from different branches, we dispatched everything and got it done by sundown.”

Quinn now has ten units at seven different locations in the largest county in the United States.

In Florida, the start of hurricane season is still more than a month away, but Ring Power is putting its experience to work, supporting multiple hospitals on surge tents for overflow patients and isolation rooms. Some are ordering backup generators to support the infrastructure of their own hospitals or potential new buildings they might need to occupy. Some have contingency plans and for this Cat dealer, it’s about working to facilitate their needs as they better understand what those are.

“When customers are calling, they need a solution provided that makes sense, that works and not put anyone in danger," said Steve Ferlita, Vice President of Power Systems. "But certainly dealing with hurricanes gives us an advantage for a mindset and how we approach the business.”

Ring Power and other dealers are getting help from Cat Entertainment Services (CES) who, usually during this time of year, is providing support for NASCAR and other big sporting and musical events. But in the midst of a global crisis, with those events grinding to a halt, CES is shifting gears too.

“A lot of things are being re-scheduled for later in the year," said Mike Hone, VP National Sales Manager Entertainment Services. "Right now, we're utilizing our expertise in event power to assist hospitals, medical facilities and local governments during this critical time. We’re also trying to figure out how to cover 6 to 8 months’ worth of events into a three month window when everyone is trying to reschedule.”

In the end, there was positive news coming out of Seattle as the makeshift hospital was put up and then torn down three days later without seeing a single patient, as efforts to fight the virus with existing facilities seemed to be working.

You can learn more about what other dealerships are doing by going HERE

At Caterpillar, we continue to salute those of you who continue to keep the world moving forward in these trying times. 

 

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