More than $400,000 worth of Toyota Corollas were donated by Toyota Motor Manufacturing Mississippi today to area Toyota car donations 1emergency management agencies and community colleges.
The 29 vehicles – which were used by Toyota employees for their own training purposes – will be used for several purposes. For example, fire departments will practice extrication efforts, community colleges will use them for their automotive technology programs.
Phil Rodi, vice president of manufacturing at TMMMS, said the donation was part of a nationwide program the Japanese automaker has in which it donates vehicles from its other plants for similar purposes.
The vehicles are drivable, but aren’t certified to go on roads.
“These cars have been used for training for our team members,” he said. “We build, rebuild. … it’s a lot of repetition and skills training. We’re also training for inspection. We have a lot of people who have never built a car before, so this is valuable training.”
Brad Crowder, director of the automotive technology program at Itawamba Community College, said his department will receive seven Toyota Corollas, recently produced at the Blue Spring manufacturing facility.
The cars will be used to train students on the latest in automotive technology. which is only available on late model cars.
“The 2011 (models) will really help with diagnostic training for students,” Crowder said.
Tupelo “Toddlers and Tiaras” episode airs
The TLC channel’s reality show “Toddlers and Tiaras” featuring the Steele family from Tupelo aired Wednesday night.
The Steeles, along with about 60 members of their family, extended family and “pageant family” gathered at D’Casa at The Mall at Barnes Crossing for a viewing party.
Two year-old Oliviana Steele was featured in the episode as she participated in the circus-themed “Beauties Under the Big Top” pageant in Georgia.
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