Daimler ramping up Western Star production

Daimler Trucks North America (DTNA) has added a second shift and plans to ramp up production at its Portland Truck Manufacturing Plant in Portland, OR, which exclusively produces its Western Star Class 8 truck

Daimler Trucks North America (DTNA) has added a second shift and plans to ramp up production at its Portland Truck Manufacturing Plant in Portland, OR, which exclusively produces its Western Star Class 8 truck. The ramp-up will create some 350 new jobs at the facility by the end of 2012. Those additional workers will represent a nearly 50% increase in personnel at the plant and will include approximately 330 shop employees as well as another 20 engineering and support positions. The plant currently employs approximately 700 shop employees and 50 engineers, managers and support staff.

The increase in production capacity and hiring comes in response to a “strong and steady rise” in Western Star orders throughout 2011 and company expectations for continued growth in 2012, said DTNA. Western Star launched its newest vehicle, the 4700, earlier this year. Western Star trucks are sold internationally with key sales regions being the U.S., Canada, Australia, South America, South Africa and Indonesia. The Portland plant currently employs approximately 700 shop employees and 50 engineers, managers and support staff.

“We are delighted to be able to make this announcement…and proud of the achievements of our Western Star workforce,” said Martin Daum, president & CEO of DTNA. “The growing demand for our Western Star products is testimony to our brand focus on premium customer specifications combined with our leading powertrain technology.

“Western Star is known as a serious work truck, and for good reason,” added Daum. “They’re built here in Portland with a heritage of the toughest vocational uses: logging, mining, specialized heavy hauling and military use. Despite global economic challenges, Western Star has been able to leverage its well-earned reputation and access to Daimler resources and technology to capture market share, leading to our announcement today.”

The current hiring activity in Portland marks the first time since 2006 that DTNA has had open-market hiring for shop positions at this particular plant. Hiring of new employees will begin in November and the new production shift is slated to be at full capacity by February. A second wave of hiring is planned for next summer to support the projected increase in demand.

DTNA will accept online applications for the machinist, material handler and maintenance positions at the Portland Truck Manufacturing Plant beginning Friday, October 21, 2011. In addition, more than 150 positions in the fields of mechanical, electrical, electronic, and manufacturing engineering are currently open at DTNA in Portland and other company locations. Interested applicants for plant and engineering positions may apply at http://dtna.jobs/.

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