Jeffboat to idle 278 workers at Indiana shipyard

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Barge and towboat manufacturer Jeffboat LLC has notified the state of Indiana it will lay off 278 workers at its Jeffersonville shipyard because of slumping demand.

Jeff boat notified the Indiana Department of Workforce Development of the layoffs on Wednesday.

Company Vice President Mike Poindexter said in a written statement the layoffs will occur over the next several months.

Jeffboat employs between 800 and 1,000 people at the shipyard at any one time, depending on the projects the company is working on. In June, Jeffboat employed 1,060 people, according to the economic development agency One Southern Indiana.

Jeffboat is owned by American Commercial Lines, which was the nation’s largest inland shipbuilder in 2010, when it was acquired by Los Angeles-based private equity firm Platinum Equity.

Most of the employees losing their jobs are welders and fitters that belong to Teamsters Local 89 of Louisville.

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