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Bridgestone Venezuela plant shuts down again

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The Bridgestone/Firestone tire plant in Valencia, Venezuela, has closed again after resuming tire production on Nov. 29 following a shutdown that began this past Friday.

Last week's shutdown and today's shutdown were caused by an "internal dispute between rival leaders of the labor union" at the plant, says a Bridgestone Americas Holding Inc. spokesman.

"This disagreement is related to union leadership issues and is not a dispute between the company and the union.

"However, at this time we feel it is in the best interests of our teammates and our business to temporarily shut down the Bridgestone/Firestone tire production facility in Valencia until an agreement is reached between the separate groups that will allow us to safely re-open the plant."

Bridgestone/Firestone officials say they expect the shutdown to be "very brief" and that it will have little impact on customers.

"Once this matter is resolved we will immediately begin the process to re-start the factory."

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