North Charleston, S.C., received good news on July 30. Boeing Commercial Airplanes said it has assigned the assembly work for the newest jets in the 787 family exclusively to the plant it has operated there since 2004.
The move may be controversial because of the International Association of Machinists union’s previous contention, on behalf of its members employed at Boeing’s Everett, Wash., assembly plant, that that the South Carolina operation was developed in order to avoid building the jets at their location.
The union sued Boeing through the National Labor Relations Board, contending retaliation (versus IAM workers in Washington state) for building the new plant in a “right to work” state. Boeing and the IAM later settled the dispute, and Boeing agreed to build its 737MAX jet series at the Everett plant.
"We looked at all our options and found the most efficient and effective solution is to build the 787-10 at Boeing South Carolina," stated vice president and general manager Larry Loftis, of BCA’s 787 program. "This will allow us to balance 787 production across the North Charleston and Everett sites as we increase production rates. We're happy with our growth and success in South Carolina, and the continued success at both sites gives us confidence in our plan going forward."
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