A nearly century-old Delaware steel plant is set to close but the closure that officials hope is only temporary.
Steel company EVRAZ is shutting down its operations at a steel mill in Claymont.
The company says that over the next two months about 375 employees will complete processing and shipping of existing products and prepare the mill to be shut down. The company says it will consider restarting operations as soon as market conditions improve.
"We appreciate our employees’ efforts to operate EVRAZ Claymont as efficiently as possible," said EVRAZ Executive Vice President -- Flat Products and Recycling John Zanieski. "Unfortunately, market conditions continue to be challenging and low market visibility makes it difficult to foresee when positive changes will occur.”
A small crew will remain to maintain the site.
Gov. Jack Markell was “disappointed” about the idling plan and said his thoughts are with the families hit hard by the closure.
“The global steel industry remains very challenging and DEDO was told that the facility is losing money as it seeks to compete with imports from China,” said Markell spokeswoman Cathy Rossi. “The Governor knows that this facility has an outstanding workforce that is second to none. The Department of Labor will be on site later today to work with the affected employees. The Governor and DEDO will continue to work with Evraz to seek every opportunity to get the plant fully operational again.”
The company's Claymont operation makes steel plate and custom plate products for industrial customers. The work being done at Claymont will shift to EVRAZ facilities in Portland, Ore., and Canada.
The plant along Philadelphia Pike and the Delaware River is 93 years old.