Lugoff plant closing; more than 100 to be out of work

The South Carolina Yutaka Technologies plant in Elgin will be closing its doors this summer.

LUGOFF, SC (WACH) - The South Carolina Yutaka Technologies plant in Lugoff will be closing its doors this summer.

The plant is expected to close all operations on June 29. At that time, 90 full-time employees will lose their job. Several dozen part-time employees will also be unemployed.

"It is a sad time, Iâ??ve been here a little over four years, I was hoping to stay," said Vice President of Operations Jim Edwards. "Itâ??s not only unfortunate for myself, but for everyone that the plant's closing."

Currently, the Department of Workforce is helping current employees find future employment.

Employees will receive severance pay, but it has not be released on how long they will receive the income.

Yutaka Technologies manufactures parts for All Terrain Vehicles and supplies a variety of components to the Honda Manufacturing facilities in Ohio and South Carolina. Officials with the plant say people aren't buying ATVs like they used to as the vehicles are more of a luxury than a necessity.

"This will impact our business," said Patti Courtney. Courtney manages Gadget's Sports Bar & Grill on U.S. 601. Several Yutaka employees regularly frequent Gadget's.

"We will lose customers," Courtney said of the news that Yutaka is closing.

Yutaka is located in the Heritage Point industrial park, three miles from Gadget's. County officials are trying to find a new tenant once Yutaka moves out.

"Economic development is always a case of a step forward and a step backward," said Kershaw County Administrator Vic Carpenter.

Carpenter notes that several companies have added dozens of jobs in the county over the past few weeks.

Kershaw's unemployment rate is 8.5%, among the top 10 best counties in the state.