...Companies Make Plans

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Liberty Aircraft's headquarters and assembly plant is in Melbourne and a contingency plan went into effect there on Wednesday. President Tony Tiarks told Kern, from a hotel in Orlando on Sunday, that they protected the business as well as possible. "We've made three copies of our software and they are in safe places, even out of state. We offered all the employees hotels in Orlando," he said. Four finished aircraft were moved out of state and the company doesn't have to worry about production tooling because that's all done elsewhere. Only final assembly is done in Melbourne. In nearby Vero Beach, New Piper's headquarters took a daylong pounding from Frances as the storm stalled off the coast. There's no word on any damage there. Kern said a lot of "aviation hot spots" that missed the worst of Charley will get the full brunt of Frances. Among them are the Kennedy Space Center and Kermit Weeks' Fantasy of Flight. But some, like Tom Reilly's Flying Tigers Museum in Kissimmee, may have taken a one-two punch.