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'Safety is our priority' | GM to temporarily suspend operations at Wentzville plant

General Motors is planning to suspend operations at plants across the country amid coronavirus concerns

WENTZVILLE, Mo. — General Motors plans to suspend operations across the country, including at its Wentzville plant, to keep facilities clean and protect employees amid the coronavirus pandemic.

The Wentzville plant will suspend operations at the end of second shift on March 23.

The suspension will last until March 30 and production status will be reevaluated week-to-week after that, according to a press release.

Ford Motor Company and Fiat-Chrysler also suspended operations.

The United Auto Workers union urged the companies to close their doors over concerns surrounding the virus.

“GM and the UAW have always put the health and safety of the people entering GM plants first, and we have agreed to a systematic, orderly suspension of production to aid in fighting COVID-19/coronavirus,” said GM Chairman and CEO Mary Barra. “We have been taking extraordinary precautions around the world to keep our plant environments safe and recent developments in North America make it clear this is the right thing to do now. I appreciate the teamwork of UAW President Rory Gamble, UAW Vice President Terry Dittes and local leadership as we take this unprecedented step.”

In December of last year, GM announced it would be investing $1.5 billion in the next generation of mid-sized trucks to be built at its Wentzville facility.

Statement from Wentzville Mayor Nick Guccione:

"I'm glad they made the decision for the safety and wellbeing of all the employees. This thing has to be contained. These people are working in close quarters. I know it's a hardship for every business and the small businesses in all of our communities, but safety is our priority. Everybody is doing their part to keep this from spreading."

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