As numerous other businesses around the world shut down for temporary closures, Tesla’s main factory in Freemont, California, will stay open.
Many people are choosing to work from home and self-quarantine as the coronavirus spreads, but Elon Musk is asking the 10,000 employees at the plant to come in. Musk said, “I’d like to be super clear that if you feel the slightest bit ill or even uncomfortable, please do not feel obligated to come to work,” according to a report from the Los Angeles Times.
Following that, he said, “My frank opinion is that the harm from the coronavirus panic far exceeds that of the virus itself. … I will personally be at work, but that’s just me.”
The factory is located in Alameda County, which currently has an order to close all non-essential businesses. However, the county has also deemed Tesla an “essential business.”
The county’s FAQ regarding the closures defines essential buildings as, “health care operations; businesses that provide food, shelter, and social services, and other necessities of life for economically disadvantaged or otherwise needy individuals; fresh and non-perishable food retailers (including convenience stores); pharmacies; child care facilities; gas stations; banks; laundry businesses and services necessary for maintaining the safety, sanitation and essential operation of a residence.”
I don’t see electric car manufacturer on that list, but keeping the Model 3 production alive is likely essential to Musk. That said, according to reporting from CNET, many other automakers are keeping their factories open as well.
Source: Los Angeles Times