AK Steel will likely idle most of its Ashland Works (Kentucky) beginning in late July or early August. The idling will affect about 750 hourly and salaried employees. It is the result of recent announcements by GM and Chrysler to significantly curtail production as well as the continuing global recession. AK Steel said the plant is likely to remain idled at least through the balance of 2009. All steel slabs produced at the Ashland Works must be transported approximately 150 miles to AK Steel’s Middletown Works (Ohio) for conversion to hot-rolled coils. The Ashland Works also employs about 290 at a coke plant, which is scheduled to continue operating at a reduced level.

ArcelorMittal will idle production on the west side of the company’s Indiana Harbor facility in East Chicago, Ind., causing the indefinite layoff of 978 employees. It will continue producing metal on the east side of the facility. ArcelorMittal also gave a required 60-day notice to shut down its steel mill in Georgetown, S.C. The decision will put 242 employees out of work, at least temporarily.