Evansville Courier & Press

About 15 workers at a Toyota supplier are losing their jobs.

Tenneco Inc. announced today it will close its operation in Evansville. The plant had supplied exhaust systems used on the Tundra pickup trucks that had been built at the Toyota plant in Princeton, Ind.

Toyota announced earlier this year that it intended to move the production of Tundra from Princeton to a factory in San Antonio, Texas. The Princeton production of the pickup truck was halted in August.

Jane Ostrander, Tenneco spokeswoman, said the Evansville plant was established in 2006, for the express purpose of supplying the exhaust systems of Tundras.

"When they consolidated that production down in San Antionio, we had no business for the facility," she said.

Throughout the world, Tenneco plans to cut 1,100 jobs and close five operations in a broad restructuring, as the company grapples with an industry downturn.

The maker of emission and ride control systems for automobiles said the move and other cost cutting efforts are expected to save $64 million a year. Tenneco expects to record charges of up to $60 million for restructuring - of which $25 million will be recognized in the fourth quarter and the rest through 2009.

The company is restructuring one North American plant and closing four, including a Milan, Ohio, elastomer facility. Its Dunsborough, Australia, engineering operation will be shut down as well.

Tenneco said the other affected operations will be identified in the near future.

About 500 salaried jobs and 600 hourly positions are being eliminated. The restructuring is expected to be completed by the end of next year.

Earlier this year, Lake Forest, Ill.-based Tenneco cut over 1,150 jobs globally - of which 760 were in North America. Before the cuts, Tenneco had a total work force of about 21,000.

"We must act quickly by better aligning our operations with the new realities of the market," said Gregg Sherrill, chairman and chief executive, in a statemment.

Contributing: Dan Shaw/Courier & Press

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