GREER, S.C. (WSPA) – An upstate company is creating thousands of laboratory certified masks each day, pushing to stay ahead of any future PPE shortages. In fact, they’ve already made over 1.5 million of them. People with Advanced Testing Instruments or ATI formed a subsidiary called Carolina Facemask and PPE.

Ryan Gehricke is just one of the many hands behind the masks being made within the walls of Advanced Testing Instruments. A company known for selling textile testing instruments, quickly shifted gears to fill a growing demand.

“What we started realizing was that most of our customers were larger businesses that had a complete necessity to provide masks to their employees,” said COO of Carolina Facemask & PPE, Rick Gehricke.

In fact, one of their employees was on the frontline of it all. She previously worked at a hospital and saw the shortage firsthand.

“I was a tech, we had to wear the same mask for hours at a time,” said Quality Control Worker with Advanced Testing Instruments, Jo Davis.

They had the materials and means to help at ATI.

“We become sort of a one-stop shop for mask production, whether it be the testing of the materials going into the masks, the producing of the masks themselves or supplying any of the needed materials required to complete the finished masks,” Gehricke told 7 News.

Plus, these aren’t your average masks. They’re laboratory certified disposable masks. Masks some medical professionals said are starting to be required in a handful of other countries.

That’s their goal, getting ahead of any potential future shortages with American made materials from the hands of veterans like Rick Gehricke.

“We want to have all of those products on pallets in our warehouse ready to go for people in the upstate who need them,” Gehricke said.

These masks are available for people in the upstate and also sold in bulk to companies nationwide.

You can find more information on them here: