Ford Motor Co.'s Dearborn Engine plant. PHOTO: Ford Motor Co.Click image to enlargeIn response to the ever deepening COVID-19 crisis, Ford Motor Co., General Motors and Fiat Chrysler have suspended operations at all North American plants commencing March 19, 2020.

The Detroit 3 automakers on March 18 all issued statements advising of the temporary shutdowns. The closures will last through the end of March, with evaluations about continued action on a weekly basis.

The companies have also struck a joint task force with members from each automaker, the UAW and Unifor to develop strategies to deal with the ongoing pandemic.

“We’re continuing to work closely with union leaders, especially the United Auto Workers, to find ways to help keep our workforce healthy and safe – even as we look at solutions for continuing to provide the vehicles customers really want and need,” said Kumar Galhotra, Ford’s president of North America. “In these unprecedented times, we’re exploring unique and creative solutions to support our workforce, customers, dealers, suppliers and communities.”

FCA says it will use the time off to enhance its manufacturing operations to facilitate the changes agreed with the UAW including shift timings, structures and enhanced cleaning protocols.

 “Working with the UAW, and having visited many of our plants yesterday, we need to ensure employees feel safe at work and that we are taking every step possible to protect them. We will continue to do what is right for our people through this period of uncertainty,” said FCA CEO, Mike Manley.

To ensure that production stops in a safe and orderly fashion, General Motors’ plants will suspend operations in a cadence, with each facility receiving specific instructions from manufacturing leadership.

"GM and the UAW have always put the health and safety of the people entering GM plants first, and we have agreed to a systematic, orderly suspension of production to aid in fighting COVID-19/coronavirus," said GM Chairman and CEO Mary Barra. "We have been taking extraordinary precautions around the world to keep our plant environments safe and recent developments in North America make it clear this is the right thing to do now.”

Meanwhile, Unifor is pushing for workers to retain regular wages, whether they are unionised or not if there are work stoppages due to the pandemic.

“We understand that this pandemic requires an extraordinary response, but Canadian auto workers must not bear the brunt of this crisis. Workers must be protected from this virus and from financial hardship as a result of this pandemic,” said Jerry Dias, Unifor National President.

Bombardier among outperforming businesses: National Bank

The National Bank of Canada says Canada’s 43 most prominent family controlled businesses – a group which includes Bombardier – “sustainably” outperform the S&P TSX composite index.

DMG MORI debuts machining technologies at German open house

 

DMG MORI held its annual open house at its Pfronten, Germany facility, to debut advances in machining technologies, including the introduction of six new machine tools and Industry 4.0 enabling technologies.

Inter Pipeline nabs $408M provincial grant

Inter Pipeline Ltd. will receive $408 million from the Alberta Petrochemicals Incentive Program (APIP) to support the company’s Heartland Petrochemical Complex (HPC).

Tekna announces $5.5M expansion of Quebec metal powder production plant

Canadian advanced material powder manufacturer Tekna has announced the expansion of its second plant and its new manufacturing infrastructure in Sherbrooke, Quebec.

NAFTA: US pushes for stringent auto content

The Canadian automotive manufacturing industry is concerned about ongoing NAFTA negotiations in light of recent reports that the US is pushing for more stringent US auto content, according to media and industry reports.

Mazak hosts Discover Education Automation event

November 8-9, 2018, Mazak Canada will host a two-day Discover Automation Education Event, focusing on how to automate low to medium-volume/high-mix machining production.

Ontario high school gets Hypertherm education grant

On Ontario high school was one of several educational institutions in North America to be selected for Hypertherm's Spark Something Great educational grant.

GM, Lockheed Martin to build new moon rover

Lockheed Martin and General Motors Co. have been contracted by NASA to build the next generation of lunar vehicles to transport astronauts on the surface of the Moon.

US GDP points to strong economic growth

Economic optimism is rising on the latest data coming out of the US market: the advance estimate of second quarter 2014 GDP growth in the US was 4.0 per cent, well above market expectations for a 3.0 per cent increase, according to an RBC Economics statement by economist Nathan Janzen.

Dormer, Pramet merge, present unified front at IMTS

Dormer Tools and Pramet Tools have come together under a new corporate name, Dormer Pramet. The newly formed entity debuted at IMTS 2014 in Chicago in September with the presentation of its new Pramet indexable range of cutting tools.

Quebec welding students receive awards

Twelve students enrolled at the Western Quebec Career Centre, a vocational school in Gatineau, QC, have received awards from the Canadian Welding Association Foundation.

ABB to manufacture robots in US

ABB plans to produce robots in the US, making it the first global industrial robotics company to fully commit and invest in a North American robotics manufacturing operation, according to the company. The new production facility will serve customers in Canada and Mexico, in addition to the US.

Manufacturers focus on augmented reality

Some manufacturers think augumented reality (AR) has an important role to play in the future and they, in conjunction with AR partners, have released the world's first augmented reality hardware and software functional requirement guidelines to help manufacturers incorporate AR technology into their processes.

BC to lead economic growth: Report

British Columbia is expected to be the only province to advance by more than 3 per cent this year, according to The Conference Board of Canada's Provincial Outlook: Spring 2015. Following growth of 2.6 per cent in 2014, the province's economy will grow by 3.1 per cent in this year and 2.7 per cent in 2016.

Honda has built its nine millionth vehicle in Canada

Honda Canada Inc. (HCI) last week celebrated two significant milestones at its Alliston, Ont. manufacturing complex.

Stay In Touch

twitter facebook linkedIn