More layoffs at Caterpillar

CLAYTON Officials with Caterpillar confirm they are re-organizing and laying off some workers at their plant in Clayton. But they won't say how many people are affected.

The "temporary" layoffs involve "Grade 14" employees. It's a technician's level, and one of the lowest paying jobs at the plant.

While the layoffs were called temporary, workers were not told when they might get their jobs back.

Some workers say more layoff announcements are expected Thursday and layoffs are also expected at the company's Sanford factory by the end of the month.

One man e-mailed Eyewitness News saying; "the situation is definitely not any better for the people working at Caterpillar and as we know the housing, construction and mining industry continues to deteriorate."

The cuts come as the demand for heavy construction equipment continues to slow. Employees said they were told the plant has seen a 50 percent decrease in orders for construction equipment in the last few months.

Michelle Baldetti's sister works at Clayton Caterpillar; she says she is hoping her sister's job is safe.

"She talks about how production is down a whole lot and whenever it's down in the future she knows there are going to be more layoffs," Baldetti said.

Andrew Jackson says his friend works at the Clayton Caterpillar and was offered a buy-out on Wednesday.

"Buyouts first, then layoffs," Jackson said. "That means there are going to have to do something, maybe re-train, take a lower paying job or just sit out and wait for things to get better because it's rough all over, it's really rough."

Workers tell Eyewitness News that Caterpillar in Clayton will continue cuts for a second product line and some workers estimate up to 100 employees will be affected by the cuts.

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