FX Industries adapts to COVID-19 pandemic by helping other businesses adjust to life in the new normal

Composite image. Background shows stock image of welder. Foreground image shows warehouse stock of Germ Berm sneeze and cough guards from FX Industries, Hurricane, Utah, date not specified | Foreground photo courtesy of Wil DuCrest, St. George News

CONTRIBUTED CONTENT — While the COVID-19 pandemic forced many businesses in – Southern Utah to decrease employee hours – or worse, completely shut down – one Hurricane manufacturing company has been fortunate enough to add job openings as a result. And they are now shipping their newly-innovated products nationwide.

Stock of Germ Berm sneeze and cough guards from FX Industries, Hurricane, Utah, date not specified | Photo courtesy of Wil DuCrest, St. George News

Family-owned FX Industries, the parent company of Special FX Lighting, FX Powder Coating, Creative Metal FX and Monument FX, specializes in the manufacturing and finishing of a wide variety of custom-designed products used locally and around the world.

Their latest efforts, the Germ Berm, Salon Shield and custom hand sanitizer dispenser stands, were inspired by the company president’s desire to help protect friends and neighbors in the customer service industry.

FX Industries general manager Wil DuCrest told St. George News there are many businesses needing to make adjustments right now to protect their employees’ and customers’ safety, and if the need arises, they are ready to make almost any product to meet the current health and safety standards.

“If you can think of it, we can make it,” DuCrest said, adding that when talk of a shutdown first happened, they immediately started thinking of ways they could keep busy and not lay people off.

Hundreds of the Germ Berm sneeze and cough guards — an easy-to-use, free-standing protective shield — have already been sold, and FX Industries even had to add another shift to their production crew.

DuCrest said his mother, who is the president of the company, came up with the idea.

“We came up with a prototype, and the day after we had the first prototype up is the day that we saw them up at the grocery stores,” he said. “That solidified to us that it was a good idea.”

He said they had to play with several different ideas before deciding on a final prototype for the Germ Berm, but once they embraced their capacity as a metal manufacturer, everything began falling into place.

“We actually run four businesses out of this location. We manufacture components for the lighting industry, we have the powder coating job shop, we have the metal fabrication business and then we a have a monument business where we make headstones, awards and other things,” he said. “They (Germ Berms) start off in metal fabrication. We cut them on our CNC table. We build everything here, and the nice thing about our product is that we give it a little more professional touch.”

Dozens of local companies have ordered the products, DuCrest said, adding that the berms can be personalized by using a laser to engrave any company’s logo into the acrylic coat.

Salon Guard from FX Industries, Hurricane, Utah, date not specified | Photo courtesy of Wil DuCrest, St. George News

The company’s new Salon Shield is a product made exclusively for nail salons. It’s basically the same idea as the Germ Berm, but it enables the nail techs to perform their job in front of somebody safely. Whereas the Germ Berm has a 2-inch opening to slide paperwork through, the salon shield has a 6-inch opening so people can put their hands through easily.

“The salon tech can be protected, and the person can be protected,” DuCrest said. 

As the pandemic continued, they discovered that hand sanitation stands were in extremely high demand, especially as nonessential businesses started reopening, and their newly designed portable and sturdy stands make safety even more convenient. DuCrest said they are selling dozens every day.

“We’ve created a lot of jobs out of this thing. Our powder coating business was already pretty busy as it was; we were already running two shifts,” he said. “Now I’m running three in powder coating.”

Hand sanitizer stands from FX Industries, Hurricane, Utah, date not specified | Photo courtesy of Wil DuCrest, St. George News

FX Industries has been located in Hurricane since 1991, but they first started out in Las Vegas painting light bulbs. DuCrest said back in those days before digital lighting, when signs would switch colors, it was because they all had different colored bulbs, and their company would paint every one.

Besides helping businesses operate during the current pandemic, one of the fun projects they recently completed was the new signage for River Rock Roasting Company on the cliffs of the Virgin River in LaVerkin, and DuCrest said they are really proud of the memorial bench they created and donated for Macin Smith in Crimson Ridge Park in St. George.

If anyone needs help with a project, he invites them to call.

“If someone’s got a project or a product that they want to see and they really don’t know how to start, we’ve done prototyping.”

He said they have already helped launch a few different brands for clients.

“We could basically make anything, from start to finish. If there’s a need out there that needs to be met, that’s what we’ll make.”

FX Industries is located at 293 N. 2260 West in Hurricane. Call 435-635-0239 to find out how they can help bring your vision of the future into reality.

•  S P O N S O R E D    C O N T E N T  • 

Written by ANDREW PINCKNEY, St. George News.

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