Ford Motor Company

Ford Motor Co. donates thousands of COVID-19 face shields to US military

Ford Motor Co. has finalized an agreement with the U.S. Department of Defense to donate 200,000 face shields to military bases across the U.S. and abroad to protect against the coronavirus. The face shields are constructed from car parts and made in Michigan as part of Ford’s response to the pandemic crisis. Now they have been shipped around the world to locations including Fort Hood in Texas, the New Hampshire National Guard, the U.S.S. Ford aircraft carrier, Afghanistan and Syria, according to the Dearborn-based automaker. “We know that our military has to stand ready to fight, regardless of COVID-19, and we just wanted to make a donation giving back to our service members,” Vanessa Benson, Ford’s military ambassador and a retired Army colonel, told Fox News. The Department of Defense officially accepted the donation on April 28 deeming the face shields will be in the best interest of the military, according to a letter to Ford from Under Secretary of Defense Ellen M. Lord viewed by Fox News. “This gift will benefit the Department by helping to protect DoD non-medical personnel participating in FEMA COVID-19 response operations,” Lord wrote. The Defense Department valued the face shields at $5 each so Ford’s donation was worth an estimated $1 million. Fort Hood, Texas, already received 50,000 face shields and West Point, N.Y. got their shipment of 30,000, which Ford hopes will be on display when cadets come back to campus and congregate on June 13 for their graduation from the U.S. Military Academy. President Trump announced he will be the commencement speaker. “We hope to see them use [the face shields] for their graduation in June,” Benson said. During the pandemic, Ford Motor Co. had to stop making automobiles for the first time since World War II, but reconfigured some of its southeast Michigan plants to make personal protective equipment and ventilators. Trump visited the Ford plant in Ypsilanti Township on Thursday to thank the workers who stepped up during the crisis and returned to work to make life-saving equipment. “In our nation’s war against the invisible enemy, the hardworking patriots here today answered the call to serve. You proved that the American worker is … ‘Built Ford Tough,'” Trump told the Ford workers, in a nod to the company’s slogan. “… You’ve made America proud and you’ve made Ford proud. And America is very proud of Ford.” Ford started manufacturing the face shields March 23 at the Troy Design and Manufacturing in Plymouth Township, Mich. They’re made by automobile workers who volunteered to come back to work for the special project during the pandemic when in some cases they would have made more money staying home on unemployment. In all, more than 1,000 Ford employees signed up to work at four southeast Michigan auto plants that have been converted to make ventilators, masks, respirators and face shields. Since then, Ford has produced more than 18 million face shields, at a rate of about one every second to help essential workers and health care professionals during the pandemic. Ford shipped more than 15 million face shields to all 50 states and Puerto Rico to help with the growing need for personal protective equipment. May is National Military Appreciation Month and the face shield donation is an extension of Ford’s ongoing military and veteran outreach campaigns, known as Proud to Honor. “For this Memorial Day, we want to thank all those that are serving and, most importantly, remember all those that we have lost because freedom isn’t free in this country,” Benson said. “And we’ve had a lot of people who’ve had to sacrifice for us to have our freedom.”

Indeed..  Major kudos to Ford for stepping up like this.  Excellent!!    🙂

Ford VP on collaborative effort to ramp up ventilator production: Goal is 60 per hour

Ford Motors’ partnership with General Electric (GE) and Airon Corp. to build 50,000 new ventilators in the fight against coronavirus is in service to first responders and their patients, Vice President of Enterprise Product Line Management Jim Baumbick said Tuesday. Appearing on “America’s Newsroom,” Baumbick said that Ford’s announcement to build the new ventilators in just 100 days — half of the time it normally takes — was following the footprints of company history. “Well, there is a very famous statement at Ford and it’s ‘Go Like Hell,'” he explained. “We see an incredible need for getting medical devices and personal protection equipment into the hands of patients and first responders that need it the most of help fight this war. So, everybody at Ford is absolutely committed to doing whatever we can to help out.” Baumbick said that the auto company’s partnership with GE health care and Airon medical manufacturing has been a “great collaboration,” taking the best sides of each company and mashing them up together in order for production to ramp-up. “So, it’s really been kind of a two-pronged approach,” he said. “We’ve wanted to get teams on the ground both at GE and at Airon and we’re making immediate improvements in the through-put on their current production lines. We’ve seen almost a 40 percent increase in the amount of product that we’re able to produce from GE’s existing lines working collaboratively with them. So, that’s getting units out to people right now, today.” Baumbick said that Ford would work with Airon in Florida to achieve the same results. “And, as we bring these team members on to amazing partners of the [United Auto Workers], our goal is to get up to a production rate of nearly 60 of these machines per hour,” he stated. The design Baumbick and others had been developing is what they believe is the “right purpose-built machine to help for the current crisis.” “Because, as we set up these makeshift ICUs and convention centers and other locations, electricity and other infrastructure is going to be a challenge,” he remarked. “And so, this device has an advantage where it operates off compressed oxygen. The device delivers the basic need that is required to support COVID patients.” “There’s a combination of those factors that really got us locked in on this as the best possible design to move quickly, given the urgency,” Baumbick concluded.

Kudos to Ford Motor Company, GE and these other great companies for really stepping up!  Excellent!!      🙂

Ford teaming with GE to build 50,000 ventilators by July 4, working on ‘Trump time’

Ford is partnering with GE Healthcare to build 50,000 ventilators by July 4 at the automaker’s Rawson Components Plant in Michigan, the companies announced on Monday. The automaker will produce the Airon Model A-E ventilator, which has been licensed by GE Healthcare for the effort. Airon currently manufactures the devices at a rate of just three units per day at its Florida location, and Ford will assist in boosting production there as the new line is set up in Michigan. The current retail price for the device is approximately $7,000. A press release accompanying the announcement quoted White House Defense Production Act Coordinator Peter Navarro as saying Ford and GE are working on ‘Trump time’ to get the project going. The Model A-E is a relatively basic model that is sufficient for treating COVID-19 patients, according to Tom Westrick, GE Healthcare vice president and chief quality officer. It is compatible with masks and intubation and operates pneumatically via its oxygen supply without the need for electricity. A team of 500 paid-volunteer UAW members will work three shifts, 24 hours daily when the Ford facility reaches full production. Ford is also helping GE double the production of its own more complex CARESCAPE R860 through a separate effort. The news comes following an announcement from General Motors and Ventec Life Systems that the automaker is converting one of its electronic components factories to produce the Ventec VOCSN ventilator at the rate of up to 10,000 units per month.

This is SO awesome!   Kudos to both Ford Motor Company and GE for their joint effort here!  Excellent!!    🙂

Ford says it’s ramping up production to combat coronavirus: ‘We’re going like hell’ on masks, ventilators

As the private sector is getting involved in combatting the coronavirus outbreak, Ford Motor Company executive chairman Bill Ford said on Tuesday that the automobile company is working with General Electric and 3M to “gear up production” on essential medical equipment. “We are going like hell, yes we are,” Ford told “Fox & Friends.” Ford said that his company is collaborating with 3M in making “air-purifying respirators, face shields, and 3-D printing N95 respirator masks.” “We got four different work streams going and we’re going as fast as we can,” Ford said. Meanwhile, GM, Ventec Life Systems and, coordinated private-sector response to COVID-19, are collaborating so that Ventec can increase its production of respiratory care products as hospitals across the U.S. face a potential ventilator shortage. 3M has doubled its production of N95 respirator masks since the coronavirus outbreak to a rate of nearly 100 million a month, Street Insider reported. Ford said that the medical equipment will be ready “soon.” “We’re testing face shields this week in Detroit-area hospitals to make sure they work and then we can ramp up pretty quickly,” Ford said. Ford said that his company is trying to “dramatically increase” the production of N95 respirators. “We’d like to do it by a factor of six to 10 times of what they’re already doing.” Ford went on to say, “And on the ventilator with GE, we’re helping them prototype, we’re using our engineers and manufacturing people and then as soon as we get that right, we’re going to go like crazy.”

This partnership between the Trump Administration and private sector is really working well.  Major kudos to Bill Ford and his company for stepping up.  As a Ford Mustang GT (my third, lol) driver, I’m proud of what Ford is doing to support the fight against this virus.  Excellent!!    🙂