“We knew that to play our part helping combat coronavirus, we had to go like hell and join forces with experts like 3M to expand production of urgently needed medical equipment and supplies,” said Jim Baumbick, vice president of Ford Enterprise Product Line Management. “In just three weeks under Project Apollo, we’ve unleashed our world-class manufacturing, purchasing and design talent to get scrappy and start making personal protection equipment and help increase the availability and production of ventilators.”
Around 90 paid United Auto Workers Union volunteers will assemble PAPR and N95 respirators at Ford’s Vreeland facility near Flat Rock, Michigan with the ability to produce 100,000 or more. Ford developed the new PAPR respirator with the help of 3M to include a hood and face shield and an air blower system using a similar fan found in the seat of a Ford F-150. Work has started at Ford’s Rawsonville plant to manufacture a third-party ventilator starting on April 20 and ventilator pre-production has also begun in the UK to satisfy the government’s request for 15,000 units.
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