AKRON-Goodyear will boost production at its Lawton, Okla., tire plant beginning in January and lay off 250 workers at its Gadsden, Ala., tire facility. The Lawton plant is the largest single producer of radial passenger tires in the world, manufacturing about 54,000 tires per day, the company said. Goodyear will increase operations at the plant to full seven-day weeks beginning in January, boosting the unit's total capacity by 5 percent.
The factory's 2,300 employees are working nearly around-the-clock now, a Goodyear spokesman said. The current near-continuous operation is broken for eight hours on Sundays for maintenance purposes. The plant has been working under that schedule since it opened 17 years ago.
Meanwhile, the planned layoffs at the Gadsden plant will reduce tire production at that plant by 15 percent to match decreasing demand, Plant Manager Chuck Grunder said.
He had alerted hourly employees via letter Sept. 10 that the plant's poor performance might lead to its shutdown.