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Several media outlets report that FreightCar America in Roanoke will close its manufacturing plant on Campbell Avenue by November – putting more than 200 out of work. An H-R executive with FreightCar America says the layoffs should be considered permanent.They should begin in September. Market conditions were cited as a reason for the closure.

(From company release) “The closure of our Roanoke facility is another next step in our ‘Back to Basics’ strategy as we continue to streamline our manufacturing footprint and match it to our future product offering,” said Jim Meyer, President and Chief Executive Officer of FreightCar America. “Reducing our fixed costs and achieving world-class output from our much larger Shoals facility have always been core pillars of our turnaround strategy.”

Meyer added, “We have spent the last two years building our talent, processes and overall capabilities at Shoals and the plant is now in a position to accept the Roanoke models and volume. This action, when complete in the first half of 2020, is expected to save approximately $5 million per year.”

Meyer concluded, “Our people at Roanoke have consistently performed above all expectations. We are extremely thankful for everything they have given the Company.”