WICHITA FALLS (KFDX/KJTL) — The United Auto Workers strike continues to shake the nation. Several large auto manufacturer factories are experiencing walkouts, and, on Tuesday, October 24, 2023, one of those walkouts struck home.
In Arlington, 5,000 workers walked out from the General Motors factory.
This factory is the largest and most profitable within GM, and auto companies are preparing for the impact down the road.
Early impacts of the strike have yet to fully reach the auto dealers in Wichita Falls, but some companies are starting to feel the impact.
However, local vendors don’t anticipate holding the short stick with supply chain issues.
UAW successfully put a dent in profits despite only protesting for a month.
On Tuesday, when the Arlington walkout occurred, GM announced a drop in its third-quarter profit.
So far, the company lost 800 million dollars.
The Union is working towards its fair share of the market revenue.
“The union fight benefits the working class, and we just fight for our fair share of the pie,” said Keith Crowell, President of local UAW 276. “Inflation. They left us behind. The greedy CEOs have left us behind and we just want what’s right for the working class.”
Back home, some companies aren’t too concerned about the strike.
“Here, at O’Reilly Auto Parts, we have our own vendors that make our own parts,” said Brian Yockey, an installer service specialist. “So we’re not as affected as the dealers.”
Local vendors do not get their parts from major manufacturers. Instead, their product comes from local dealers, leading the strike to not impact their business as much as it will affect dealerships.
“If you have to go to the dealership to get serviced, that may take longer than going to one of your local vendors to get done,” said Yockey.
Yockey doesn’t expect the local vendors to be completely excluded from the effects of the strike.
“We have not experienced anything yet, but it’s coming,” said Yockey. “We will get to a point where one day I need a part and it’s just plain not available.”
If your car needs generic parts, there is a good chance you will be okay.
The biggest concern is for vehicles that need personalized parts.
“The only problem is, when a part fails and it’s a unique part you have to get from the dealer, you’re going to find that part’s not available right now, and that’s going to cause problems for you,” said Yockey. “Your car may become inoperative.”
The strike is rumored to be nearing an end per The New York Times. However, car parts may remain scarce for several months after the strike.