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      Class action lawsuit filed against American LaFrance

      MONCKS CORNER, S.C. (WCIV) -- A class action lawsuit was filed Friday against the fire truck manufacturer, American LaFrance, on behalf of two former employees.{}

      According to a release on{}Richardson Patrick Westbrook & Brickman's website, the two former employees filed the suit against the plant claiming the employees were not given federally mandated notice of the shutdown.{}

      The{}Worker Adjustment and Retraining Notification Act gives protections to employees and their families by requiring businesses to give at least 60 days notice{}of covered plant closings and covered mass layoffs.

      The layoffs and shutdown of the Moncks Corner plant came suddenly on Jan. 17.{}

      According to the law firm, the two employees filing the suit had worked for American LaFrance for nearly 10 years.{}

      "These employees have been left out in the cold.{} Not only did they lose wages and benefits, they lost the time they needed to search for new employment. Our firm has extensive experience in protecting the rights of workers locally and nationally, and our goal is to make sure these employees receive all they are due," said attorney Jay Ward.{}

      The workers at the Berkeley County plant were not the only ones to be laid off. The company also shut down its facilities in Los Angeles and Ephrata, Penn.{}

      The only comment American LaFrance has made on the matter came in a release when the plant was closed, saying it was impossible to continue production.{}

      "Unfortunately, the company's unexpected current financial condition requires the discontinuation of operations in these locations at this time and these{}facilities are not expected to reopen," the company said.{}

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