Wabash National, Lafayette, Inc., is proceeding with restructuring that involves closing facilities and cutting 900 jobs.

The trailer maker will close assembly plants in Ft. Madison, Iowa, and Scott County, Tenn, and a parts distribution facility in Montebello, Calif. The company also will write off about $28 million in excess used trailer inventory.
Last month, Wabash reported a $10.8 million second-quarter loss.
"Since existing poor market conditions have shown no signs of near-term improvement, the restructuring and cost reduction plans are important to the company's future in order to align its cost structure with the market," said Mark Holden, vice president and chief financial officer.
Holden notes the company currently has approximately $100 million of used trailer inventories and anticipates receiving up to $50 million in used trailer trade-ins before the end of the year. "We believe our business simply can no longer support these levels of used trailers and the associated infrastructure costs," he said. "Therefore, we have put in place plans to significantly reduce our used trailer inventories to approximately $50 million by the end of the year."
Wabash also announced some executive changes. Arthur R. Brown has been appointed to the position of vice president/chief operating officer. Brown will have responsibility for all manufacturing operations, as well as the purchasing, quality, and the manufacturing and industrial engineering functions of the company. With more than 25 years of manufacturing experience, Brown most recently was vice president of Fram/Autolite Operations for Honeywell Corporation, overseeing manufacturing operations in an eight-plant group.
The company has hired executive search firm Heidrick & Struggles International to help fill the position of chief executive officer.
Richard E. Dessimoz is currently acting CEO.
Wabash National designs, manufactures, and markets standard and customized truck trailers under the Wabash and Fruehauf trademarks.