Less than a month after a tornado ripped through a BorgWarner auto parts plant in South Carolina, the plant has resumed production. It supplies parts for Ford, Fiat Chrysler Automobiles and Toyota.
BorgWarner’s tornado-damaged plant near Seneca, South Carolina, which makes parts for Fiat Chrysler Automobiles, Ford and Toyota, is back up and running.
The destruction from the early morning twister last month killed 77-year-old security guard Jack Harvill, and as the Free Press reported earlier, raised concerns about the ability of Detroit automakers to provide a key part — transfer cases — for popular vehicles, such as the Ram 1500, Ford F-150 and Toyota Tundra.
BorgWarner’s tornado-damaged plant near Seneca, South Carolina, which makes parts for Fiat Chrysler Automobiles, Ford and Toyota, is back up and running. (Photo: BorgWarner)
Although U.S. auto manufacturing was shut down because of the coronavirus pandemic, the prospect that a major supplier might be hampered in its ability to provide crucial parts raised concerns as automakers contemplated their own restart dates. FCA plans to resume production at all but one of its U.S. plants the week of May 18. Ford and GM are believed to be considering a similar date.
On Wednesday, BorgWarner, which is based in Auburn Hills, announced that it had rebuilt enough of the plant to allow production to resume this week.
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“The facility is still a working construction site, but employees are coming back to reconstructed areas with proper precautionary measures and production is re-starting,” according to an email from company spokeswoman Michelle Collins.
Plant Manager Joe McCulloch called the effort “a true testament to the power of collaboration and teamwork of the employees in Seneca and all of BorgWarner.”
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