Ford closed its plant in Dearborn, Michigan, due to a positive Covid-19 test by an employee. Meanwhile, the giant’s plant in Chicago was also closed, but not because of a new infection of the infection, but because of a shortage of parts, said Ford spokesman Kelly Felker.
Ford declined to say which supplier it had problems with, but a person familiar with the matter told the agency that it was most likely Lear’s plant, an American company that makes car seats and electrical systems. Lear, who is working with Ford, later confirmed that it had closed its plant in Hammond, Indiana, due to a positive employee test.
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It was Ford’s second plant to close in Chicago after two workers also tested positive for the Covid-19 this Tuesday. Both Dearborn and Chicago plants are expected to resume production on Wednesday, Felker said.
Positive tests from Dearborn and Chicago suggest that people were infected by contact outside the production facilities.
An extremely cost-effective F-150 pickup is being built in Dearborn, and the Chicago plant is making the Ford Explorer and Lincoln Aviator SUVs.
The U.S. auto industry, including Ford, opened many of its plants on Monday after a long shutdown. To ensure safe operation amid the health crisis, Ford and other carmakers and suppliers have imposed new safety measures, including screening employees entering the building and enforcing the use of face masks and shields. On the assembly lines, social distancing should be observed, where possible.
The reopening of car factories is a test of the situation in the country. General Motors and Fiat Chrysler said they had no problems at any plant in North America.