Steel Mills

ArcelorMittal Idles Hot Strip Mill at Indiana Harbor

Written by Sandy Williams

ArcelorMittal has idled the hot strip mill at Indiana Harbor East Chicago but will not lay off the 300 affected workers.

United Steelworkers District 7 Director Mike Millsap said the union is working to re-assign workers to East Chicago, Burns Harbor or Riverdale.

ArcelorMittal spokeswoman Mary Beth Holdford said the company “expects to optimize our assets in the United States without layoffs by leveraging natural attrition.”

The idling is one of several measures to restructure the U.S. operations by closing inefficient operations and investing in the remaining ones. The No.1 aluminizing line at Indiana Harbor West was shut down recently and the long carbon facilities at LaPlace, La., and Vinton, Texas have been sold to Black Diamond Capital Management.

“Action 2020 is a strategic road map that aims to achieve targeted financial improvements for the company by 2020,” said Holdford. “In the United States, efforts to support Action 2020 include asset and cost optimization as well as an improved portfolio of high added value products. These products will ensure ArcelorMittal is uniquely positioned with a strong technical and product portfolio to serve customer requirements.”

The 84″ HSM at the East Chicago facility is one of two mills with a combined capacity of 9.8 million tons of hot rolled per year. The line being shut down was the smaller of the two, with a capacity of 3.8 million tons.

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