Dresser-Rand

Siemens officials reported that the Dresser-Rand facility in North Olean will not close due to coronavirus, having been declared an essential business because of work for the oil and gas industry.

OLEAN — Siemens officials confirmed that the city’s largest manufacturer will remain operational under a state executive order shuttering nonessential businesses.

“Given the nature of the work done at the Olean site and the need to keep energy infrastructure operating efficiently across the U.S., the site has been deemed essential in line with the New York State directive and critical production will continue,” a Siemens spokesperson said about the Dresser-Rand site in North Olean. “All CDC recommendations, including social distancing and robust cleaning, have been implemented at this and other Siemens facilities.”

The Olean plant, part of the company’s power and gas division, manufactures large turbines for the oil and gas industry, necessary to bring natural gas from wells to storage facilities and into homes and businesses.

As of Sunday, there were 19 jobs being advertised at the Olean facility, including engineering, drafting, analyst, welder and electrician postings.

Siemens reported having created both global and U.S.-specific task forces to continuously monitor the impact of coronavirus, evaluating new developments and “determining measures to protect the health of our employees, customers and communities in accordance with the guidance of international, national and local authorities.”

The company, a Germany-based conglomerate, has businesses including healthcare, energy, transportation and other sectors deemed essential by New York and other governments.

“While we remain committed to this effort, we do so by putting the safety of our employees first. We continue to provide our teams performing critical duties with the knowledge, tools, and equipment to maintain their personal health and safety,” the spokesperson said. “Every employee is empowered to evaluate their work environment for hazards and authorized to stop work if they encounter any situation that puts them in danger, whether or not they are deemed ‘essential’.”

Clark Bros., founded in 1880 in Belmont to build pumps for the explosion in Southern Tier oil development, moved to Olean in 1912. The firm merged with Solomon R. Dresser Co. — originally of Bradford, Pa. — in 1938 to form Dresser-Clark, which was later Dresser Industries. Dresser-Rand was formed in 1986 in a joint venture with Ingersoll Rand, which owned a compressor manufacturing plant in Painted Post.

Siemens, a Germany-based energy conglomerate, bought Dresser-Rand in 2015 for $7.8 billion.

(Contact City Editor Bob Clark at bclark@oleantimesherald.com. Follow him on Twitter, @OTHBob)

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