TUSCALOOSA, Ala.In an updated announcement, Michelin North America Inc. announced it is laying off nearly 10 percent of the workers at its BFGoodrich tire manufacturing plant in Tuscaloosa indefinitely.
There will be 95 or 96 workers laid off at Tuscaloosa beginning Oct. 28, leaving the plant with slightly more than 1,000 workers, according to Mark Williams, president of United Steelworkers (USW) Local 351L in Tuscaloosa, which organizes the BFGoodrich workers there.
In a prepared statement issued Oct. 11, Michelin said it was making the layoffs to align production and inventory with current market demand.
Details of the layoffs are still being finalized, it said.
We continue to monitor the tire market and will react accordingly, the company said.
The soft economy plus import competition were to blame for the layoffs at the passenger and light truck tire plant, according to the USW's Mr. Williams.
We're a Tier 2 company, below the big names like Mich-elin, Goodyear and Bridgestone, he told Tire Business.
Our competition comes from Hankook, Yokohama and companies like that.
Only two BFGoodrich tire plants in the U.S.the Tuscaloosa plant and the facility in Fort Wayne, Ind.are still unionized, Mr. Williams said. The BFGoodrich plant in Ardmore, Okla., is non-union.
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