New product line for Ford to impact Northeast Ohio economy

6:10 PM, Feb 24, 2012   |    comments
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Ford has announced it will be adding 250 jobs to its Brook Park plant. They'll be working to build a new energy efficient Eco-boost engine. The work will begin mid-May. 

WKYC Anchor Russ Mitchell had a rare, extensive tour of the Ford Motor Company's Brook Park Plant.

Tewanda Williams has worked at Ford for 22 years. At the Brook Park plant she helps build the turbo engines that go into the Ford F-150 truck. She says every time she sees one on the street her reaction is the same.

"That's the engine I probably made!" Williams says with a laugh.

They've been cranking Ford engines out of here for 61 years. Right now more than 1500 motors a day leave this plant powered by 1100 workers. And more jobs could be on the way.

"We're looking at putting in a small disposition assembly line in this plant to go along side with our current assembly line. And that will mean more jobs," said Pete Johnson with the UAW. He estimated it would take a couple hundred new jobs to run a shift.

That new line will build a high tech 4-cylinder engine and while the company has not made an official announcement, it will say as the only American carmaker not to take the government buyout, Ford and this plant are in a great position.

"We had a plan. We went out and financed ourselves and restructured the business and clearly it's been a successful plan," said Charles Binger, site manager Cleveland.

Driving this optimism in part are sales figures for January that show a 7 percent increase from a year ago. It was the best January for the company in four years.

To put things in perspective, in the 1970's Ford's Brook Park complex had more than 16,000 workers.


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