Local Company Cools Off Middle East

It's a product spawned in the blazing East Texas sun. "Air Chillers" are made at Stutt's Tire in Athens, and their portable cool breeze is welcome anywhere.

"Basically anywhere there's heat and people, where air conditioning is not a viable option, is a potential market for this concept," explains company CEO Greg Roach.

The cooling machines are completely portable, needing only electricity. They spray a stream of cool water, and can lower the temperature fifteen to degrees within minutes.

The idea originally came from East Texas athletics. Since last year, over 500 have been sold for use anywhere that needs a cool breeze. The company decided the Middle East would also be one of those locations.

"We're sending five units with our complements to the troops in Iraq," Roach says, "providing an improvement in the quality of life for the soldiers there."

"Over there it's a hundred and forty degrees in those tents. They have to sleep 24 hours a day in shifts to cover their posts. They need something that will cool those tents down and provide relief."

At least something good comes from an East Texas summer.

Reid Kerr (rkerr@kltv.com) reporting.