Plant Closure In Waverly Leaves 175 Unemployed
Officials from Terex Corporation announced the immediate closure of the company's crane manufacturing plant in Waverly, putting 175 people out of work on Tuesday (July 19, 2016).
Terex executives said the closure is a cost-cutting move for the company, which is consolidating and expanding its crane production operations at an Oklahoma City plant that's more centrally located to transport raw materials and finished products. The Oklahoma facility recently underwent multimillion-dollar upgrades to handle the increased load.
The company released a statement confirming the closure.
“Terex Cranes has announced it will expand its North American cranes production at its facility in Oklahoma City, allowing the company to maximize its existing manufacturing footprint and better serve customers,” the press release said. “As a result, the company will close production of its Rough Terrain Cranes, Truck Cranes and Boom Trucks in Waverly, Iowa, effective July 19, 2016. Production in OKC of the lines formerly built in Waverly is expected to commence in September.”
The release also said: "Moving Waverly product lines to our Oklahoma City location is consistent with our continuing strategy to win the market place by aligning our costs with market demands."
Waverly employees learned about the closure on Tuesday, just before the public announcement was made. The company immediately idled about 100 production workers affiliated with United Auto Workers Local 411 and gave them a 60-day severance package. Terex kept 75 non-union and non-production workers at the plant, but their jobs will be phased out in the coming weeks.
Local economic development leaders plan to help the displaced workers.
“Waverly’s immediate priority will be to provide support to the individuals and families directly impacted by the closure,” city officials said in a news release. “We are already working with Iowa Workforce Development to provide information and services to the impacted workers. We will work with our partners in Iowa and the Cedar Valley Region to identify opportunities in Waverly, Bremer County and the Cedar Valley for jobs and training that will allow the affected families to stay where they now live and work.”
Crane manufacturing began in Waverly in 1941, when brothers Vern and Wilbur Shield started the operation. The local plant became part of the Terex Corporation in 1987.
Terex officials said the company plans to keep accounting offices in Waverly.