MOON, Pa. (KDKA) — As millions of unemployment claims grow across the state and country, one local company had to lay off nearly all of its employees too, but Monday those workers were back on the job.
Wade Heating and Cooling employees came back to work for the first time in weeks.
“Walking into this office this past month, it was like a morgue. It was quiet, there was nothing going on. It was very, very strange,” owner Bob Wade said.
The pandemic forced calls for service to be below normal. Mix that with cooler temperatures this month and Wade said their business was down 90 percent.
He was forced to lay off 30 employees about a month ago. In his nearly 40 years with the company, he’s never had to lay that many people off.
“It was a shock for quite a few of us,” service technician Dylan Prokop said as he started his first day back.
“I don’t think over that time period that I laid off maybe 10 at the most. I had to lay off 30 in one week,” Wade told KDKA.
Wade said help arrived with money from the Paycheck Protection Program. It should keep the business going for at least 8 weeks.
“It’s nice to see everyone and get our guys back working,” installation manger Bob Bloss said.
Wade hopes by the time that money runs out, temperatures go up and give them more business.
Employees felt fortunate they were able to come back to work when companies are furloughing or laying off employees.
“I feel bad for a lot of people who don’t have the income to survive,” Prokop said.
“Luckily we have work to do here, so it will keep everybody busy,” Bloss said.
Wade said they saw an uptick in calls this past week.