SPRINGFIELD, Tenn.- It wasn't shift change, yet dozens of workers walked out of a Robertson County plant on Friday after Electrolux of Springfield was recently the subject of a NewsChannel 5 investigation.
NewsChannel 5 looked into whether the plant employed illegal immigrants. Sources told NewsChannel 5 more than 100 workers have been let go in the past couple of days.
The employees said it was complete chaos. According to a NewsChannel 5 source, so many workers have been let go that it has been hard to do their jobs at the Electrolux plant.
Second and Third shifts have been hit the hardest, and they believe the company is taking action to fix a problem that should not have happened in the first place.
Diane Casey has lived across the street from the Electrolux plant for years. In that time she has had a front row seat of who comes in and out of the plant, but Friday was different from the rest. It was an observation shared by many during the plants' shift change around 1:00 Friday afternoon.
According to a NewsChannel5 source, Electrolux let go 120 employees Thursday and 52 on Friday.
"They were calling your supervisor, calling names to go to HR, taking them to HR and from there walking them out the door. Something about their ID's or Social Security numbers weren't matching," said an anonymous employee.
Electrolux released the following statement:
"Electrolux does not tolerate or condone the use of false documentation in attempting to establish work eligibility. Every new hire undergoes two verifications of employment eligibility. In light of the recent news stories, we are conducting a review of employment eligibility documentation. The company's policy regarding the presentation of false identity or work authorization documents is termination of employment."
"After our last break on the lines it just went berserk," said the employee.
A phone call during second shift Thursday night prompted many employees to walk out.
"Somebody had called in saying INS was going to be there to pick them up when they walked out the door, so they voluntarily walked out themselves," said the employee.
The situation could hurt Electrolux's production. Electrolux wouldn't confirm or deny the number of workers that have been let go in recent days or why.
The immigration and customs enforcement department, better known as "ICE," is looking into illegal document vendors in the Springfield area.
Earlier this week, federal Agents arrested two people, and charged them with making and selling fake IDs in Robertson County.