CLEVELAND — Detroit automakers General Motors and Ford Motor Company will shut down all their factories to protect workers from the spread of COVID-19 coronavirus. The Associated Press said two people briefed on the matter say Fiat Chrysler will close too.
Ford said its plants will close after Thursday evening shifts, through March 30, while GM will begin a “systematic orderly suspension” of production through at least March 30. Operations will be evaluated weekly after that.
The United Auto Workers union has been urging the companies to close their doors over concerns surrounding the new virus.
“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. I appreciate the teamwork of UAW President Rory Gamble, UAW Vice President Terry Dittes and local leadership as we take this unprecedented step.”
Honda says it will suspend production at all of its automobile plants amid the coronavirus pandemic for several days and employees will still be paid during that time.
Honda released the following statement on Wednesday:
Honda today announced that it would adjust production at all of its automobile production plants in North America, including the U.S., Canada and Mexico, due to an anticipated decline in market demand related to the economic impact of the COVID-19 pandemic.
Honda will suspend production for six days beginning March 23, with current plans to return to production on Tuesday, March 31. Honda transmission and engine plants in North America that serve Honda auto plants also will suspend production for the same time period. Honda will reduce production by approximately 40,000 vehicles during these six days.
As the market impact of the fast-changing COVID-19 situation evolves, Honda will continue to evaluate conditions and make additional adjustments as necessary. In undertaking this production adjustment, Honda is continuing to manage its business carefully through a measured approach to sales that aligns production with market demand.
During this time, Honda will continue full pay for all of its associates. Approximately 27,600 Honda associates in North America will be affected by this temporary suspension of production. In addition, Honda will utilize this time to continue deep cleaning of its production facilities and common areas to further protect associates upon their return to the plants.
This production adjustment also will allow Honda associates to better prepare and adjust family plans in relation to regional directives to close schools to stop the spread of the COVID-19 virus. This will enable working parents to determine how best to manage the needs of children staying home from school and other required lifestyle adjustments.
The list of affected Honda plants closing include: Marysville Auto Plant, East Liberty Auto Plant, and Performance Manufacturing Center in Ohio.
The affected powertrain plants include: Honda Transmission Manufacturing of America (Ohio) and Honda of America Mfg. Anna Engine Plant (Ohio).
Click here for our special coronavirus section.