Aircraft engine maker closing local plant

Aircraft engine maker Pratt & Whitney will close its plant on Kentucky Avenue within the next 18 months and gradually let go all 100 of its employees.

Slumping airplane-engine sales led the East Hartford, Conn.-based company to consolidate the plant’s repair services. It makes and services tubes and hoses for airline-engine manufacturers.

“This was based on the downturn in the global economy, and especially the aerospace industry,” company spokesman Greg Brostowicz said this morning.

Pratt & Whitney is part of United Technologies Co., whose Carrier Corp., Otis Elevator Co. and Hamilton Sundstrand subsidiaries have operations in Indiana.

Brostowicz said Pratt & Whitney employees can apply for jobs at the other three companies. Carrier has operations in Indianapolis, Otis in Bloomington and Hamilton Sundstrand in Michigan City.

Local Pratt workers also will receive severance pay and job-placement help, he said.

Pratt & Whitney took over the Indianapolis plant in 2001 from International Aerospace Tubes.

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