RESTON, Va. (WJLA) - Roughly 1,000 people lost their jobs last month when Truland Systems, a Reston-based institution that describes itself as the tenth-largest electrical contractor in the country, abruptly shut down. As a result of the fallout, a number of lawsuits are in play, and some local construction projects could also take a hit.
When Truland Systems went out of business, it still had plenty on its plate, including a contract with Clark Construction to do the wiring at George Washington University's new science center, a project that may now be significantly thrown off course.
"It's not just a run-of-the-mill electrician that come and do this work, so I think it's going to affect them drastically," former Truland employee Ronnie Solomon said of the GWU project.
Clark Construction filed a motion in bankruptcy court complaining of Truland Systems' failureputting the GWU project woefully behind schedule and potentially costing Clark Construction hundreds of thousands of dollars.
Truland Systems also had electricians on the job at the new facility at INOVA Fairfax Hospital, as well as on Metro's Orange and Blue lines.
Students mourn the delays in the construction of GWU's new science center.
"I feel like it's going to be beautifulwhy delay it?" said prospective student Jenna Casman. "It kinda looks unfinished right now."
Meanwhile, Solomon wonders what he will do with the vehicle Truland Systems told him to take home the day the company folded.
"We want it gone," he said.
This week, several former employees filed a class-action lawsuit against Truland Systems; it maintains the company broke the law by not providing adequate warning to workers. Companies are required to give workers 60 days' notice under a law called the WARN Act. Former employees in the lawsuit are fighting for 60 days' worth of compensation.
"It's definitely good for the employees, you know, the thousand employees that haven't been paid," Solomon said. "But, really, in the long run, what does that get you years down the road?"