FedEx breaks ground on 'cool' $25M facility - FOX13 News, WHBQ FOX 13

FedEx breaks ground on 'cool' $25M facility

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    Friday, October 4 2013 3:43 PM EDT2013-10-04 19:43:45 GMT
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MEMPHIS, Tenn. (FOX13) -

FedEx is expanding its operation in a way that will help save lives for very special deliveries.

The Memphis-headquartered global shipping business broke ground Thursday on a $25 million temperature-controlled cooling facility for sensitive and cold storage packages.

The 88,000-square-foot high tech facility, once complete, will help save lives. The rooms inside will have precise temperature and humidity controls for transporting medical products.

For example, in the event of a flu or other epidemic, FedEx would be on the front lines.

"This gives us a great place to stage vaccines for the outbound movement in such of an outbreak," said Richard Smith, FedEx Life Science Director. "This is a world class facility designed for this purpose.  So this will be somewhat game changing for us."

Once completed FedEx's new cold storage facility will also store medical devices and specimens, pharmaceuticals and organs and bone marrow for transplant.

The cold transport service is already making a difference.

"We were able to provide really life-saving transplant for his bone marrow," said Mike Ducker, FedEx Express COO. "His life's been saved, and his mother and dad met me in Hong Kong to thank me for what DedEx has done. That young man is now going to medical school."

The new facility will streamline the cold transport. Packages with precise temperature requirements will be monitored constantly.

"They will be able to log onto the system and see exactly what the temperature is in that room, where the product is being stored, and generate and report to the FAA to show they are being compliant," Smith said. "It's very powerful technology."

The focus of the new facility will be medical shipments, but items like flowers and food will also go through the facility.

The $25 million temperature-controlled cooling facility is expected to open by Fall 2014.

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