In December, a tornado destroyed a candle factory in Mayfield, Kentucky. Due to the incident, the factory is set to potentially lay off hundreds of employees if they’re unable to relocate to another plant. Unfortunately, these layoffs are likely to be permanent.
Mayfield Consumer Products revealed that the company plans “to accelerate the opening of its planned facility at Hickory Point” in Hickory, about 10 miles away. This would transfer nearly half of 501 of its employees to Hickory. However, at the time of the tornado, over 100 people worked in the factory.
Last month, on Dec. 10, the tornado in Kentucky took the lives of 9 candle factory workers. Another 89 people in the surrounding area died in the storm.
According to the U.S. Department of Labor, they require companies to provide at least 60 calendar days advance written notice of a mass layoff affecting 50 or more employees at a single site of employment. This includes those that are the direct result of a natural disaster.
Kentucky Tornado: Candle Factory Gives Notice to Lay Offs
The company’s website is currently a landing page. Also, this includes a statement from CEO Troy Propes and the phone number for a hotline. The statement gives necessary information to employees.
It reads: “Our Mayfield, Kentucky facility was destroyed December 10, 2021, by a tornado, and tragically employees were killed and injured. We’re heartbroken about this, and our immediate efforts are to assist those affected by this terrible disaster. Our company is family-owned and our employees, some who have worked with us for many years, are cherished.”
Several survivors filed a lawsuit against the company, accusing them of showing a “flagrant indifference” to workers’ safety. However, Bob Ferguson, a spokesperson for the candle factory, gave a statement to The Courier Journal. It also claims that the company will offer positions to everyone who received a termination notice.
Tornado Wreaks Havoc in Florida
Earlier today, on January 16th, a tornado tore through Fort Myers, Florida. According to Naples Daily News, National Weather Service forecaster in Tampa, Stephen Shiveley, informed everyone in Southwest Florida of an “active weather situation.”
Following the storm, Naples Daily News spoke to 81-year-old Fort Myers resident, Edward Murray, who revealed the tornado tossed his Cottage Point Trailer Park mile home on top of a neighbor’s home. “That’s my house that’s turned upside down. The tornado took me off my feet; blew me toward the east wall; and buried me under the sink, refrigerator, kitchen chairs, and everything else.”
Thankfully, Murray and his daughter managed to escape the mobile home without injury.