The first Range Rover made underneath new social distancing measures drove off the manufacturing line on the firm’s manufacturing plant in Solihull, United Kingdom.
- Reuters London
- Last Updated: May 23, 2020, 12:56 PM IST
The first Range Rover made underneath new social distancing measures in place to fight coronavirus drove off the manufacturing line on the Tata Motors’ owned Jaguar Land Rover’s manufacturing plant in Solihull within the West Midlands area of England on Wednesday, following a latest non permanent pause in manufacturing because of the pandemic.
The luxurious carmaker mentioned that efficient social distancing, hygiene and well being monitoring measures are in place following an intensive evaluation of all manufacturing strains, engineering services, workplace areas and communal areas as the corporate begins a phased return to manufacturing.
“Seeing the first Range Rover come off our line today is a defining moment for Jaguar Land Rover, for all of us who work for the company and the many businesses in our supply chain. It marks the end of our temporary shutdown and signals the beginning of a return to normality. But, of course, this is a new normal,” mentioned Grant McPherson, Jaguar Land Rover Executive Director, Manufacturing.
“People will be experiencing many emotions, ranging from worry about hygiene to relief at being able to return to work and excitement at seeing colleagues again. The health and wellbeing of our employees have been our primary concern in the build-up to this point,” mentioned McPherson.
JLR, the UK’s largest carmaker, mentioned that worker well being and wellbeing are on the centre of its plan for a phased return to manufacturing and, with the implementation of the brand new protocol, workers will expertise a big variety of modifications to their working day from the second they enter the positioning.
Measures embrace temperature checks with thermal cameras, a two-metre distance between individuals wherever attainable, Personal Protective Equipment (PPE) the place that’s not the case, the introduction of one-way techniques and enhanced cleansing on the crops. In addition, JLR is providing each worker a reusable face visor made by the corporate.
Besides the brand new measures onsite, staff might be requested to take extra actions earlier than returning to work. These embrace finishing a web-based medical questionnaire, signing as much as a well being and wellbeing constitution, and monitoring their temperature at house earlier than every shift.
Dr Steve Iley, Jaguar Land Rover’s Chief Medical Officer, mentioned, “We have been going through unprecedented times and my thoughts are with everyone who has been impacted by COVID-19, as well as with the healthcare professionals, whose role fighting coronavirus is appreciated around the world.
“Clearly the well being, security and wellbeing of the Jaguar Land Rover household is our major concern. We have developed the simplest protocol and pointers in order that our individuals really feel reassured about coming again to the office.”
The medical officer said the UK measures are based on the extensive medical and operational review, including lessons learned from our teams in China and Slovakia, adding that the situation is being constantly monitored.
Des Quinn, Unite the Union National Officer, said: “We are glad that Jaguar Land Rover has not solely carried out authorities steerage however has gone above and past to fulfill and guarantee as many security techniques as attainable are in place from the minute staff arrive within the minute they depart work.”
Production of Jaguar and Land Rover vehicles has also resumed this week at Nitra in Slovakia and Graz in Austria.
Last week the team at the Engine Manufacturing Centre in Wolverhampton, West Midlands, began building Ingenium engines again to enable the gradual return to vehicle production. Manufacturing will resume at the Halewood facility in north-west England on June 8, starting with one shift.
The company said that “small pockets of business-critical exercise” are taking place at its Castle Bromwich facility in the West Midlands as it prepares for new model year introductions.
The company’s joint-venture plant in Changshu, China, has been operational since the middle of February as vehicle sales recover there and customers return to showrooms following the easing of the lockdown, JLR said.
“As international locations are enjoyable distancing pointers and retailers are reopening around the globe, the restart of manufacturing on the firm’s different crops might be confirmed in the end,” it added.
In its newest monetary outcomes final month, JLR reported a 42 per cent fall in gross sales of Jaguar fashions between January and March, whereas gross sales of Range Rovers and Land Rovers declined 25 per cent.
The firm’s whole 2019-20 gross sales had been down 12 per cent at 508,659 automobiles, primarily because of the coronavirus pandemic considerably impacting gross sales within the fourth quarter of the fiscal yr.