Searcy's Former Maytag Plant Nearing Final Days of Operation

DECEMBER 6, 2006 - Posted at 11:23 a.m. CST

SEARCY, AR - The former Maytag plant at Searcy is two weeks from shutting down, a move that will put about 600 people out of work.

The closing was announced in May.  Now, workers are preparing for the final shutdown, coming the week of December 18.  Maytag was bought by Whirlpool, which is closing the factory at Searcy.

The laundry plant is the fourth-largest employer in White County.

Searcy Alderman Mark Derrick says the closure is coming at the worst possible time, right before Christmas.

Workers are getting severance packages, and salaried employees are being offered jobs at other Whirlpool plants.

At a Whirlpool refrigerator plant at Fort Smith, the company is eliminating 1,640 positions.

(Copyright 2006 by The Associated Press.  All Rights Reserved.)