Bradken staff back on five-day week

Workers at Bradken in Dunedin face a more secure new year, as extra work has resulted in a return to a five-day week.

The move comes after 64 of its 68 staff moved to a four-day week in August, after it missed out on a Kiwirail tender to supply railway couplers, a mechanism used for connecting rolling stock.

At the time Engineering, Printing and Manufacturing Union organiser Mike Kirwood said the decision to award the tender to a United States-based company was another blow to the Dunedin and New Zealand economy.

Bradken manufacturing manager Darren Sparg this week confirmed staff had been working a five-day week since last month.

''It's just the work has picked up in general, which is good,'' Mr Sparg said.

He declined to comment on a suggestion Bradken had recently employed some redundant Hillside workers, instead directing queries to the company's head office in Australia, which did not return calls.

Bradken, which has a 48-year history in Dunedin, agreed to lease KiwiRail's Hillside foundry late last year and took it over on February 1.

- vaughan.elder@odt.co.nz

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