Ford has announced that it will resume production at its North American facilities from May 18 after temporarily shutting them down due to the Covid-19 pandemic. The resumption will be carried out in phases, and will see the implementation of robust safety measures to protect the company’s employees.

“We’ve been working intently with state and federal governments, our union partners and a cross-section of our workforce to reopen our North American facilities,” said Jim Farley, chief operating officer of Ford.

“We have reopened our facilities in China, successfully begun our phased restart in Europe and have been producing medical equipment in Michigan for more than six weeks and are using the lessons from all of that to ensure we are taking the right precautions to help keep our workforce here safe,” he added.

According to the Blue Oval, several parts depots in the region will come back online first on May 11, which will then be followed by assembly plants that will operate with reduced shifts. Ford’s Flat Rock Assembly Plant and Oakville Assembly Complex will restart production later on from the week of May 25 on one shift, while other components plants will join in to support this plan.

The company also compiled a comprehensive “Manufacturing Return to Work Playbook” containing various protocols and practices that employees must follow. These include daily online health self-certifications before work, temperature scans upon arrival, mandatory use of face masks and shields, and more time between production shifts to limit interaction and allow for additional cleaning.

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