Paccar braces for possible strike at Kenworth Renton plant

BELLEVUE, Wash., (Oct. 24, 2003) — Paccar Inc. and workers at its Renton, Wash. Kenworth Truck plant are hoping to avert a strike as the two sides exchange final proposals on a new employment contract. The current three-year contract expires Oct. 31. A strike vote may be taken next week.

Representatives for the union, the International Association of Machinists District 160, told the Seattle Post Intelligencer the main issue is that workers at the truck plant haven’t had an increase in the share of health benefits they pay in six years. While workers are prepared that premiums will rise as the company faces higher charges for health insurance, the issue will be how much.

The news comes as Paccar, parent company of Kenworth Trucks and Peterbilt Motors, announced this week it will continue to increase production of trucks in North America in the fourth quarter, but the company wouldn’t say whether that increased production will take place at Renton.

Paccar also operates a joint Kenworth-Peterbilt medium-duty truck plant in Ste-Therese, Que.

— From the Seattle Post Intelligencer

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