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Job loss from V.C. Summer project shutdown reaches 5,400

Human Resources
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The number of workers who have lost their jobs following the shutdown of construction on two new reactor units at V.C. Summer Nuclear Station has climbed to nearly 5,400, according to documents filed with the S.C. Department of Employment and Workforce.

The latest Worker Adjustment and Retraining Notification sent to the state agency shows that Westinghouse Electric, contractor for the unfinished project, laid off 113 workers who worked at the company’s support offices in Rock Hill.

Westinghouse also notified the employment agency that it had terminated the employment of 561 workers at Jenkinsville, site of the commercial nuclear power plant. The layoffs for Rock Hill and Jenkinsville locations was effective Aug. 31, according to the agency.

Other companies that have filed WARN notices with the state agency as a result of the project shutdown include Fluor Corp., the project manager, with 4,003; SCANA, with 617; and CBI Services LLC, with 75.

The SCANA layoffs will be effective Sept. 30, according to the employment department.

A skeleton crew remains working at the site as the project is wound down. Overall, some 6,000 people are expected to be out of work following the July 31 announcement that the project was being shuttered.

S.C. Electric & Gas, principal subsidiary of Cayce-based SCANA, abandoned the project after its partner, state-owned Santee Cooper, opted to suspend participation.

About $9 billion has been spent by both SCE&G and Santee Cooper on the construction of two 1,117-megawatt reactor units. Estimates indicated that the project would have cost the utilities about $20 billion to complete, nearly double the original budget.

The project collapsed after Westinghouse’s filing for Chapter 11 bankruptcy protection.

SCE&G and Santee Cooper operate one reactor unit at the Jenkinsville plant, which went into commercial operation in 1984.

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