Jan. 11 (UPI) -- Spirit AeroSystems has announced it's laying off 2,800 employees at its Wichita, Kan., facility, due to suspension of production of the Boeing 737 MAX plane.
A press release from the company, which is a supplier for the 737 Max program, said Spirit is cutting jobs because it's not clear when or at what level production will resume.
"The difficult decision announced today is a necessary step given the uncertainty related to both the timing for resuming 737 Max production and the overall production levels that can be expected following the production suspension," said Tom Gentile, Spirit AeroSystems president and CEO. "We are taking these actions to balance the interests of all of our stakeholders as a result of the grounding of the 737 Max, while also positioning Spirit to meet future demand."
The company is also planning smaller workforce reductions at its plants in Tulsa and McAlester, Okla., later this month.
Boeing announced in December that it would suspend production of the 737 Max, which had already been grounded by regulators in countries across the world after two crashes that killed 346 people.
The crashes have cost the company billions of dollars, tarnished its reputation and led to a shakeup among top brass, including the ouster of its CEO at the end of December.
Earlier this week Boeing submitted to Congress more than 100 pages of internal communication in which employees boasted about manipulating safety regulators and flatly admitted they would not let their own families fly on the 737 Max.
The crashes were blamed on a faulty maneuvering system that sent the planes plummeting to the ground shortly after takeoff.