Ford of Mexico Produces 100,000 Face Shields
To further expedite getting vital personal protective equipment into the hands of healthcare workers, Ford Motor Company of Mexico retooled its Chihuahua Engine Plant to produce 100,000 face shields. The effort, dubbed Project Mexico, impacted major cities domestically as well as in Central America. Production kicked off on April 27.
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According to Ford, 60,000 of the face shields were handed over to the Mexican government for distribution to frontline workers battling the spread of COVID-19. Ford gave 20,000 shields directly to health institutions in Chihuahua, Sonora, Guanajuato, and the State of Mexico; another 20,000 are being delivered to the company’s operations in Central America.
“The Mexico Project will help allow Mexico to emerge victorious from this pandemic, and for Ford to make a difference,” said Ford of Mexico CEO and President Héctor Pérez. “We have set up a training program for workers to help accelerate production and quickly bring support to those who need us most today.”
Ford is also providing its suppliers with vital equipment like masks, disinfectant, antibacterial gel, and thermometers to ensure the health and wellness of personnel throughout the supply chain.
No restart date for North American manufacturing
Ford’s mobilization of a select number of employees mirrors similar efforts throughout North America. In the United States, Ford plants have been repurposed to manufacture face shields as well as respirators, ventilators, and disposable gowns. Ford of Canada has also mobilized its Windsor Engine Plant for face shield production. The automaker has suspended vehicle production at all of its North American operations until further notice; operations in Europe relaunched on Monday.
The Chihuahua Engine Plant, which originally opened in 1983, spans 727,000 square feet and is responsible for the production of key products like the 2.0-liter and 2.5-liter four-cylinder. Chihuahua Engine currently employs an estimated 1,580 people.