- Associated Press - Friday, May 23, 2014

CANONSBURG, Pa. (AP) - GE-Hitachi is closing a western Pennsylvania plant that makes storage containers for spent nuclear fuel rods, idling 134 employees who still work there.

The company based in Wilmington, North Carolina, told workers a year in advance that it planned to shutter the GE-Hitachi Nuclear Energy Custom Fabrication Plant in Canonsburg on Oct. 29. Since then, some workers have transferred or taken early retirement.

Company spokesman Christopher White says 119 hourly, and 15 salaried employees still work at the plant about 15 miles south of Pittsburgh.

The plant is closing because its primary customer, NAC International, was bought out a competitor and because the fuel rod container business is not crucial to GE’s core business of building nuclear reactors.

The plant was known as Ionics before GE-Hitachi bought it in 2005.

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