Toyota Material Handling extends shutdown


Toyota Material Handling is extending a production plant shutdown through April 6 with plans to resume forklift production on April 7.

The Walesboro plant has been closed since March 19 after two plant employees were diagnosed with possible positive cases of COVID-19. The shutdown was scheduled to end March 27.

Company officials said the shutdown impacts 890 associates at the Walesboro plant.

They also said the manufacturer’s Parts Distribution Center will continue to operate to serve dealers and supply chain customers.

In a press release, the company announced earlier that in an effort to put the well-being of its associates first, the company is providing shop floor associates with a maximum of 10 paid days off.

A company spokesman said Thursday that the 10 paid days carry employees through April 1 and adjustments are being made to allow the use of pull-forward paid time off if needed.

Toyota has urged its associates to isolate themselves as directed by federal and state officials.

In an earlier press release, the forklift manufacturer said the company was proceeding with a full sterilization protocol for its production facilities after the first possible COVID-19 case was disclosed.

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