Boeing, the world’s largest aerospace company and leading provider of commercial airplanes, defense, space and security systems, announced a two-week suspension of production operations in all facilities in the Seattle area amid the coronavirus pandemic, according to FOXBusiness.
U.S. aerospace giant operates two commercial aviation production facilities in the Seattle area, one in Everett and another in Renton.
Everett facility is the largest building in the world and produces airplanes like the 777s, 787s, 767s and 747s– along with the Air Force’s KC-46 Pegasus refueling tanker. About 30,000 people work there.
Its plant in Renton, south of Seattle, produces the 737 line and Navy’s P-8 Poseidon maritime surveillance aircraft. About 12,000 work there.
This announcement comes one day after the news that a Boeing employee passed away due to complications from COVID-19. Boeing’s latest update reported 32 confirmed cases company-wide, 25 of which are employees based in Washington state.
Boeing’s Monday news release states “these actions are being taken to ensure the well-being of employees, their families, and the local community.” The company said it will continue to monitor the situation, and will conduct deep cleanings at all impacted sites.
“This necessary step protects our employees and the communities where they work and live,” said Boeing President and CEO Dave Calhoun. “We continue to work closely with public health officials, and we’re in contact with our customers, suppliers and other stakeholders who are affected by this temporary suspension. We regret the difficulty this will cause them, as well as our employees, but it’s vital to maintain health and safety for all those who support our products and services, and to assist in the national effort to combat the spread of COVID-19.”
Boeing shares were trading higher after being temporarily halted on the news.