Ford has announced that the company is restarting production of the F-150 and Super Duty trucks ahead of schedule. Production was put on hold after a fire at a key magnesium-based parts supplier had a fire which shut down their facility. The F-150 began production yesterday and Super Duty trucks are expected to begin production on Monday. Two major U.S.-based production facilities of F-Series trucks were affected by the OEM shutdown.
This follows the massive May 2 fire at the Meridian Magnesium Products facility in Eaton Rapids, Mich.
“While the situation remains extremely dynamic, our teams are focused on returning our plants to full production as fast as possible,” said Joe Hinrichs, Ford president, Global Operations. “The ramp-up time to full production is improving every day.”
Part of the reason for production resumption was in the moving of costly and exclusive dies for cutting or shaping materials for Ford’s trucks. Dies were saved from the fire-damaged plant and stored or shipped to other manufacturers, including the historic moving of an 87,000-pound die from Michigan to the United Kingdom on an Antonov cargo plane.
Ford recovered, repaired and validated most dies that were at the Eaton Rapids facility, and Meridian is now producing parts for the F-150 at two locations – Eaton Rapids and Nottingham, U.K. Production of bolsters for Super Duty is also restarting at the Eaton Rapids plant.