Alcoa to lay off 880 in Ferndale and Wenatchee

By Steve Guntli

Alcoa has filed a notice with the state announcing its intention to lay off 465 workers at its Ferndale aluminum plant. The company also announced plans to dismiss 415 employees from their Wenatchee facility. The layoffs could begin as soon as January 18.

Citing a stagnant global aluminum market, the company announced earlier this month it would be idling operations at the Intalco aluminum plant in Ferndale. The company had not indicated at the time the number of employees who would be laid off.

Alcoa filed the notice, called the Worker Adjustment and Retraining Notification (WARN), on November 19. The state requires WARN notices at least 60 days in advance before a company can initiate layoffs. This allows the state to put programs into place to help workers make the transition.

The Ferndale plant employs 583 people. The remaining employees will be retrained to work in the cast house, which is where molten aluminum is tempered and shaped to be used in creating components for various products.

Alcoa representatives said they expect the idling process will be complete by the end of March. The prospect of resuming production will depend on a recovery of global markets and the company’s capital investments plan.

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