Local Chinese media recently shared a video showing the safety precautions Tesla has in place at its Giga Shanghai facility. Based on the short video, Tesla China appears to be adopting a proactive stance against COVID-19, using a variety of initiatives that would allow the company to help prevent the spread of the coronavirus among its employees.
Giga Shanghai is currently back in full operations following a government-mandated shutdown during the height of the initial COVID-19 outbreak in China. After the shutdown was lifted, Giga Shanghai gradually resumed operations, until it was able to return to full activities. Today, Gigafactory 3 appears to have returned to full form, with construction at the Phase 2 zone even accelerating.
But even if the initial wave of coronavirus cases has already peaked, Tesla China is still adopting several important precautions for its employees. As indicated in the video, Tesla actively checks its workers’ body temperatures as soon as they arrive at the electric car production facility. The entire Gigafactory 3 complex is also disinfected regularly, and employees are being required to have lunch in isolation to practice social distancing.
Perhaps most interestingly, Tesla China has also stopped allowing its employees to share apartments, providing isolated accommodations instead. Overall, these precautionary measures could ultimately protect Giga Shanghai’s employees from contracting COVID-19, which is still spreading actively in other countries.
Tesla China’s precautionary measure will best be adopted by the electric car maker in its Fremont factory, Giga New York, and Gigafactory Nevada as long as the facilities remain operational. The United States is currently dealing with the effects of the coronavirus, and several areas have already rolled out a “shelter in place” lockdown. Among these are six Bay Area counties on Monday, which affects Tesla’s Fremont factory. That being said, Alameda County has declared Tesla as an “essential business,” and thus, the Fremont factory will be allowed to remain in operation, at least for now.
Responding to the county’s decision, Elon Musk has advised workers at the Fremont factory to stay home if they are feeling unwell, though he also noted that he would be reporting to work as usual. “If you feel the slightest bit ill or even uncomfortable, please do not feel obligated to come to work. I’m going in on Thursday unless anything changes,” Musk wrote in an email shared to the Los Angeles Times. At the end of his email to employees, Musk noted that “I’d rather you were at home and not stressed, than at work and worried.”
With the Fremont factory still in operation despite the ongoing lockdown due to the COVID-19, Tesla would best adopt the precautionary measures it adopted at its Giga Shanghai plant. Tesla, after all, stands as one of the only automakers with direct experience in how to run a factory safely amidst the coronavirus outbreak. The company would therefore best be served by utilizing this experience to its utmost potential.