Fire Forces Shut Down Of Local Ford Plants

Production is still being impacted at two Ford plants in Windsor after a fire and explosion at Meridian Magnesium in Michigan earlier this month.

Unifor Local 200 President John D'Agnolo says production came to a halt at the Windsor Engine Plant on Wednesday and will not start up again until May 23rd.

As for the Essex Engine Plant, D'Agnolo says the midnight shift worked Thursday but the day and afternoon shifts have been called off.

D'Agnolo says that's in addition to the plant being shut down last Thursday and Friday and this past Tuesday.  

He says the midnight shift was also cancelled on Wednesday.

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Ford Essex Engine Plant sign (by AM800's Peter Langille)

Despite the cancellations, D'Agnolo says some work is still happening at the Essex Engine Plant. "We still do the Mustang engine and they don't build the components for the Mustang," he says. "Meridian doesn't build the components for the Mustang engine so we still got to build that engine so that's why we got to build these shifts up and down."

D'Agnolo says Ford and Meridian continue to talk to resolve the situation. "Hopefully they can start building the components so they can get in the trucks as quickly as possible and we'll start building engines for them," says D'Agnolo.  

The Michigan parts plan was badly damaged in the May 2nd fire, halting the flow of parts for the Ford F-150 pickup trucks, forcing the automaker to stop making trucks for the time being.

D'Agnolo says there are roughly 350 employees at the Windsor Engine Plant.

He adds due to the holiday weekend, production at the Essex Engine Plant will not start up again until Tuesday.