Layoffs to Come for Another Wind Turbine Plant in Iowa
In late December of last year, TPI Composites in Newton announced it would be ending its manufacture of wind turbines. More than 700 people lost their jobs.
The company, which has been making wind turbines in Iowa since 2001, had its number of employees drop from roughly 800 down to near 50. Those 50 employees work in TPI's field services operation.
Roughly six weeks later, another wind turbine manufacturing plant in the Hawkeye State will join them. According to WHO13 in Des Moines, "Siemens Gamesa Renewable Energy Inc. plans to lay off workers in Kansas and Iowa because of a reduction in orders for commercial wind turbines."
The layoffs will come in Hutchinson, Kansas, and Fort Madison, Iowa. 121 people (32 percent) from the Iowa plant will be jobless, leaving 254 workers available for the company in Fort Madison.
As reported by the Hutchinson News, in a "release announcing the cuts, officials stated that the company is working to find opportunities for employees in other areas of the business, where possible." Company spokesperson told the paper that future furloughs at the plants remain possible.
Shannon Sturgil, CEO of Onshore North America, pointed to two issues being the reason for the cuts made on Wednesday, as reported by WHO13:
"One was a halt in production during deliberations by the International Trade Commission on a patent infringement suit against the company, she said. The other issue is a delay in orders in anticipation of new climate change legislation from the U.S. Congress."
Fort Madison's part of the operation is producing wind turbine blades.
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