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Big Three Automakers to Close All U.S. Factories in Wake of Wuhan Coronavirus Pandemic: Report

The General Motors Assembly plant in Doraville, Ga. (Tami Chappell/Reuters)

Ford, General Motors and Fiat Chrysler are planning to close all their U.S. factories due to the Wuhan Coronavirus pandemic, CNBC reported on Wednesday.

The Big Three automakers are planning to announce the move sometime on Wednesday, however Ford confirmed to the network it was planning to close its factories in the U.S., Canada and Mexico from Thursday evening until at least March 30.

“We’re continuing to work closely with union leaders, especially the United Auto Workers, to find ways to help keep our workforce healthy and safe–even as we look at solutions for continuing to provide the vehicles customers really want and need,” said Kumar Galhotra, president of Ford North America.

The closures come after the United Auto Workers union negotiated a partial shutdown of factories on Tuesday. It was not immediately clear why factories were moving to a total shutdown instead. Ford announced on Wednesday that a worker at a Michigan assembly plant had tested positive for coronavirus.

The spread of the coronavirus has upended much of the U.S. economy, as cities and states implement restrictions on public gatherings that have closed theaters, sports events, gyms, and other businesses. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention guidelines recommend all individuals remain at least six feet apart in public areas, complicating workplace interactions.

Zachary Evans is a news writer for National Review Online. He is a veteran of the Israeli Defense Forces and a trained violist.

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