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Cat To Close Canadian Locomotive Plant

Posted on February 6, 2012

Caterpillar will close its Electro-Motive locomotive plant in London, Ontario, Canada, and lay off at least 450 workers following several months of unsuccessful contract negotiations with the Canadian Auto Workers union. The company said the plant is closing because the cost structure of the operation is not sustainable.

The contract with Electro-Motive Canada workers in London expired Dec. 31, and Caterpillar had been looking for wage and benefit concessions from the CAW.

Electro-Motive, which makes diesel-electric locomotives, and maintains production facilities in Mexico and Illinois, was acquired by Caterpillar for US$820 million in 2010 and is a part of its Alabama-based Progress Rail Services unit. Workers at the London plant have been locked out of the plant since the beginning of the year as a result of the contract dispute.

“It is regrettable that it has become necessary to close production operations at the London facility,” Caterpillar said in a news release. “Progress Rail’s global manufacturing network assures its customers that delivery schedules will not be impacted by this decision.”

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