Caterpillar to cut 80 jobs in Winston-Salem

(Photo by Scott Olson/Getty Images)

(Photo by Scott Olson/Getty Images)

WINSTON-SALEM, N.C. — Caterpillar officials announced Thursday that the company is cutting 80 jobs at its Winston-Salem plant.

The layoffs, which are expected to take effect on Dec. 31, will reduce the plant’s workforce to 140 employees, according to a press release.

The cuts come as a surprise to none as the company announced this summer that it would be changing from mining production to railroad equipment.

Officials say Caterpillar will help affected workers by offering severance packages and outplacement services from other agencies.

The full press release read:

Caterpillar today notified members of its Winston-Salem, North Carolina, workforce that it is eliminating approximately 80 positions, which are a combination of support and management and production, as it transitions the facility from a mining to a rail facility. As previously communicated, operations will transfer to Progress Rail, a wholly owned Caterpillar subsidiary, on January 1, 2017.

Approximately 140 employees are expected to remain working at the facility once the transition occurs.  Layoffs of employees impacted by the workforce reductions are expected to take effect on December 31.

The company will try to place employees who are not continuing to work at the facility in other available positions throughout the company – or help them in their transition to a new job outside of Caterpillar. Displaced employees will receive severance packages from the company and outplacement services from appropriate agencies to ensure they have support during this transition.