NEWTON, Iowa (AP) — A central Iowa plant that produces bodies for electric buses is closing, officials said, affecting nearly 150 employees.
TPI Composites announced Thursday that production at the Newton plant will be consolidated at a company plant in Warren, Rhode Island. The plant will close by the end of February.
“Nearly all of TPI’s impacted associates at the bus body facility will be offered employment opportunities at the company’s Newton, Iowa-based wind blade facility or other TPI facilities,” according to a company news release. “We remain the largest employer in Jasper County.”
Josh Syhlman, a plant manager at TPI’s wind blade factory, told the Newton Daily News the bus plant had “never reached adequate production and profitability levels.” The buses are made of a lightweight composite and use a combination of reinforcement materials.
Although the wind blade manufacturing plant employs more than 1,000 people, it is still understaffed, Syhlman said.