Strathroy's Wescast plant to close
Union steward Levearn Blake says no one is surprised by the closure of the Wescast Industries plant in Strathroy.
Blake says at one point there were more than 300 employees at the Strathroy operation, but those numbers have dwindled. Only a couple of dozen people are working at the operation now.
Wescast is one of the largest suppliers of cast iron exhaust manifolds in North America, manufacturing primarily for the big three auto makers based in Brantford.
The company also has plants in Stratford and Wingham; in fact the company was established in Wingham more than a century ago and grew to have an international presence with plants in Europe and China.
Last year the company was purchased by one of China's largest auto parts makers. Sichuan Bohong Industry. Blake says workers did everything they could to make the Strathroy operation viable, but it wasn't enough.
Lambton-Kent-Middlesex MPP Monte McNaughton wrote a letter to Premier Kathleen Wynne expressing concerns about the Wescast closing.
He argued the closure is due to the high cost of electricity in Ontario citing a letter he received from Wescast’s CEO Ed Frackowiak expressing concerns about the future of electricity costs in Ontario.