After a rather troublesome phase, the automotive industry is slowly getting back on track. Today, the first Range Rover made under new social distancing measures drove off the production line at Jaguar Land Rover’s manufacturing plant in Solihull, following the recent temporary pause in production due to the coronavirus pandemic. All the industries were shut down because of the ongoing global pandemic but now that relaxations in restrictions are in place, things are slowly moving back to normal.
Effective social distancing, hygiene and health monitoring measures are in place following an extensive review of all production lines, engineering facilities, office areas and communal spaces as the company starts a phased return to manufacturing. Employees’ health and wellbeing are at the centre of this plan and, with the implementation of the new protocol, staff will experience a significant number of changes to their working day from the moment they enter the site.
Measures include temperature checks with thermal cameras, a 2m distance between people wherever possible, Personal Protective Equipment where that is not the case, the introduction of one-way systems and enhanced cleaning at the plants. In addition, Jaguar Land Rover is offering every employee a reusable face visor made by the company.
In addition to new measures onsite, colleagues will be asked to take additional actions before returning to work. These include completing an online clinical questionnaire, signing up to a health and wellbeing charter, and monitoring their temperature at home before each shift.
Production of Jaguar and Land Rover vehicles has also resumed this week at Nitra (Slovakia) and Graz (Austria). Last week, the team at the Engine Manufacturing Centre in Wolverhampton (UK) began building Ingenium engines again to enable the gradual return to vehicle production. Manufacturing will resume at Halewood (UK) on 8 June, starting with one shift. Small pockets of business-critical activity are taking place at Castle Bromwich as Jaguar Land Rover prepares for new model year introductions. As countries are relaxing distancing guidelines and retailers are reopening around the world, the restart of production at the company’s other plants will be confirmed in due course.