Cat cuts another 2,400 jobs

The construction equipment giant said the ongoing slump in demand for its products have forced the lay-offs. The company told Dow Jones it would close its fuel system production plant in Jefferson, Georgia and move fuel system production to other Caterpillar plants in Thomsonville, Georgia, and Pontiac, Illinois. The newswire said other Caterpillar operations affected by the cutbacks include its plant in East Peoria, Illinois, where bulldozers are built, and its Aurora plant, also in Illinois, where wheel loaders and excavators are assembled. Those plants will lose 911and 815 employees respectively. Also targeted for cutbacks are 245 white-collar and support positions that are part of the 5,000 salaried positions already targeted for lay-offs, Dow Jones said. Ironically, this latest announcement of major job losses comes as Caterpillar announced a production milestone, with the assembly of its 50,000th rigid-frame off-highway truck. The milestone was achieved at the Decatur, Illinois, plant where the trucks have been produced since 1963. Caterpillar produces 10 off-highway truck models at the Decatur facility, along with motor graders and wheel-tractor scrapers. The lucky number-50,000 was a 777F 100-short-ton capacity truck used in heavy construction, quarry and aggregates and mining. The milestone machine is destined for Czech Republic-company Prodeco’s coal operations in Colombia.

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