Human Resources and Manufacturing

Railroad supplier closing steel plant

September 24, 2019
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Bringing back coast-to-coast passenger rail
Wabtec is a supplier of components, locomotives and services to the global rail industry © Thinkstock.com

A supplier of components, locomotives and services to the global rail industry is closing a steel plant in the region.

Wilmerding, Pennsylvania-based Wabtec last week filed a notice to the state of Michigan that it will close its Barber Steel Foundry in Rothbury, at 2625 W. Winston Road.

The “permanent” closure is expected to occur over several months and be completed by Dec. 31.

In the Worker Adjustment and Retraining Notification, or WARN, Act notice Wabtec filed with the state of Michigan, the company cited “declining business conditions” as the reason for the move.

Sixty-one employees will be affected by the closure, in roles such as general labor, maintenance, security, shipping and receiving, operations, finance and more.

The employees are non-union and do not have “transfer, bumping or reassignment” rights, according to the WARN notice.

“Decisions like this are never easy but will help simplify and optimize the company’s manufacturing footprint in today’s cyclical environment, as well as better position Wabtec for success,” Wabtec said in a statement to the Business Journal.

“The company remains fully committed to all customer commitments and providing impacted employees with resources and benefits to manage the transition.”

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