Mayfield candle factory closing, announces permanent layoffs
The factory was destroyed by a tornado Dec. 10, 2021
MAYFIELD, Ky. (WTVQ) – The candle factory in Mayfield that was destroyed by a tornado Dec. 10, 2021, will not reopen and announced permanent layoffs, according to a filing with the state.
Mayfield Consumer Products, which operated the plant, plans to shift some of the facility’s operations to a new plant about six miles north of Mayfield in Hickory, Kentucky, according to the company’s filing with the Office of Employer and Apprenticeship Services in Frankfort.
The factory in Mayfield employed 501 people. The company says about half that number will be employed at the new facility in Hickory, which it hopes to have up and running “as soon as practical.”
The company filed the notice under the federal Worker Adjustment and Retraining Notification Act, or WARN Act. The law requires companies with 100 or more employees to provide 60 days’ notice of mass layoffs or plant closings; however, the company could not provide advance notice “because the cessation is due to unpredictable natural disaster that occurred on December 10, 2021, and unforeseen business circumstances that followed that disaster,” Plant Manager Michael Staten wrote in the filing with the state.
Staten went on to say in the filing, employees not offered a transfer to the new facility will be laid off.
To view the company’s filing with the state, click here.
Eight candle factory employees were killed in the tornado and many more were trapped and injured. There were 110 people working in the plant when the tornado hit.
Several employees are suing the company, claiming that as the tornado warnings came in on Dec. 10, they were told they would lose their jobs if they left the factory. The company denies the allegations.