Ford to restart European production on May 4

Ford has announced that it plans to restart production at its main manufacturing sites in mainland Europe via a phased approach from May 4.

The Blue Oval plans to recommence initial production at its Saarlouis and Cologne plants in Germany, vehicle assembly site in Valencia, Spain, and its Craiova plant in Romania.

However, it has yet to confirm a date for its Dagenham and Bridgend sites – though has said that these will be announced at a later date.

Stuart Rowley, Ford of Europe president, said: “We need to prepare for a new environment once we are past the initial peak of the Coronavirus pandemic in Europe, with the key priority in our ‘return to work’ plan being the implementation of Ford’s global standards on social distancing and strengthened health and safety protocols in the workplace.

“Our employees need to know that we are taking the appropriate steps to safeguard their well-being at work.”

Production will start at a low level to begin with, and sold customer vehicle orders from dealers will be prioritised. A comprehensive list of employee health and safety regulations will also be implemented, including the requirement to wear company-provided face masks, mandatory body temperature checks and daily wellness self-assessment procedures.

Though a limited number of employees have continued to work on company sites over recent weeks to ensure the provision of critical services, these numbers will begin to increase in a progressive basis towards ‘normal business levels’.

“This is an unprecedented time for our business, but it is bringing out the very best in our people at Ford, so many of whom are engaged in supporting their communities in a multitude of actions across Europe. As we begin to restart production, we will take that positive spirit of commitment and pride back into the workplace for the further benefit of our customers,” said Rowley.