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Keystone RV closing two factories, more than 330 workers lose jobs

The days of near-full employment in the Elkhart, Indiana, area — the RV Capital of the World — may be ending.

Keystone RV announced this week that it is closing two factories, 41 and 705, in Goshen, eliminating 334 jobs from production to plant management, from quality control to receiving. Plant 41 builds Laredo travel trailers.

In a letter to employees, Keystone told workers that the closure of Plant 41 is expected to be permanent and that it planned to offer seminars covering unemployment benefits and resume assistance. It said the last day for the employees would be September 23.

“Yeah, everything was going really well, and it seemed like, all the sudden, it just, we dropped in units, and, but it was still enough to keep us, keep us going and everything,” Keystone RV Company Plant 41 worker Robert Davis told 16 News Now. “But then, just all the sudden, it came to a halt.”

Some other RV plants in the Elkhart/Goshen area are down to operating only three or four days a week.

The RV Industry Association has revised its forecast for wholesale shipments, predicting an 8.4 percent drop in 2022 compared to 2021, although shipments hit a record high last year.

Jobs are still available in RV manufacturing in the Elkhart/Goshen area, as discussed in the Facebook group Jobs in the RV industry.

##RVT1062b

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Dana D.
14 days ago

Laying off quality control people. I didn’t know they employed any!

D Botner
14 days ago

What Trailers are(were) made in Factory.705?

Admin
RV Staff(@rvstaff)
14 days ago
Reply to  D Botner

Sorry, D. I’ve been searching online for that info and can’t find anything right off the bat. Maybe one of our readers knows. Have a good evening. 😀 –Diane

Debbie
15 days ago

Maybe some of those quality control people can work in some of their other factories and get quality improved.

Kit Vargas
15 days ago

Perhaps the “slowdown” will improve quality?

MarkAM
15 days ago

If the RV manufacturers think all the reasons for decline are external, they should be more introspective. I hope they don’t lay off the QC people; I could shock them with the list of things that didn’t work on day one of our purchase. I know things break, but they should work in the beginning, and all of the things that didn’t should have and could have been found before leaving the plant. From discussions with other buyers, this record is not limited to me, and if they think this doesn’t drive buyers away they’re terribly mistaken.

Ron
15 days ago

How is the largest tax giveaway in history (2016) working out now?

Beachcamper
15 days ago

The prices of new RV units are more than double of what I paid for mine in 2018. There is no longer that 30% off MSRP we enjoyed back in the day. There are many on the sidelines waiting to buy when prices go down. We are also considering a newer model but not able to justify the current prices.

friz
15 days ago

Over the top inflation, sky high fuel prices etc = drop in sales. I for one have cancelled a trip from FL to MI this summer due to fuel prices now beyond my wallet. In 7 decades this is the first time I have ever altered my life due to fuel prices. I am not a happy camper. Without waxing political, please, remember November! A little over 3 months away.

Nipomo Joe
12 days ago
Reply to  friz

I think it was back in the Carter admin that we had odd/even gas days. That really effected RV travel schedules…but not general aviation. AV gas did work on many gas-powered motor vehicles we even ran hot rods on the purple highest octane AV gas. Like some near the Mexican border do today…it’s worth the trip to fill up in Mexico. Same applied to light aircraft. Mexico did not ship AV gas clear up to airports near US border. They imported US AV gas..that made it US tax free in Mexico. That made for a nice savings when you were topping off with 120+ gallons in a Twin Cessna.

Tom
15 days ago

Slowing the economy can have adverse effects.I hate to say it but we may very well see 2007,2008 RV company closures again.Living near the Tampa area the big boy dealers have laid off some of their sales force.A close friend of mine just last week bought a top brand class A At an unheard of discount.

Jesse Crouse
15 days ago
Reply to  Tom

And the great RV price fall is starting.

Bob p
15 days ago

Sounds like Amazon will have access to labor.

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