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Tesla Workers Allowed To Leave Factory For First Time Since April

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Tesla Workers Allowed To Leave Factory For First Time Since April

Thousands of workers at Tesla's factory in Shanghai, China, have been allowed to go home for the first time since April.

Per Bloomberg, workers will be allowed to leave the bubble set up around the factory when the city of Shanghai was placed under coronavirus lockdown.

China's 'zero Covid' strategy meant that production at the factory had ground to a halt under lockdown restrictions as nobody could move around.

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In order to keep the manufacture of cars going Tesla created a bubble at the factory which allowed workers to live there since April and keep working.

Staff who have been living in the factory since April will reportedly be given four days off work before returning on 15 June.

Car production at the Tesla Gigafactory in Shanghai continued through lockdowns. Credit: Alamy
Car production at the Tesla Gigafactory in Shanghai continued through lockdowns. Credit: Alamy

The Tesla Gigafactory in Shanghai runs constantly, with three rotating shifts over 24 hours all seven days of the week.

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It employs over 10,000 people and produces Model 3 and Model Y cars for both the Chinese market and international export.

Under normal circumstances the factory produces around 2,100 cars a day, though impacts to production meant they only made 10,757 in the month of April and 33,544 in May.

When production was halted on 28 March, plans to create a Covid bubble resulted in one 12 hour shift six days of the week, with workers living in makeshift accommodation unable to return home.

Disused factories and an old military camp became temporary homes for thousands of workers with beds shared by workers on day and night shifts.

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The factory switched to double shifts in May, and is aiming to resume normal operations from Monday, 13 June onwards.

Even under lockdown restrictions the Tesla Gigafactory produced thousands of cars a month. Credit: Alamy
Even under lockdown restrictions the Tesla Gigafactory produced thousands of cars a month. Credit: Alamy

Staff who were outside the bubble and not able to work in the factory will be the first ones back and the plan is for all workers to be able to go home at the end of the day.

Plans for a smooth operation from here onwards may be fragile, however, as the Financial Times reports Shanghai is re-imposing lockdowns after detecting new coronavirus cases.

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The detection of 11 new infections yesterday (9 June) in China's most populous city will see large parts of Shanghai shut down once again so that millions of people can be tested for Covid-19.

The city has around 15,000 testing sites for the approximately 26 million people who live there.

Experts claim the maintenance of these testing sites at high cost is a sign that China will continue to pursue a 'zero-Covid' strategy and attempt to stamp out all traces of the virus.

UNILAD has contacted Tesla for comment.

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If you have a story you want to tell, send it to UNILAD via [email protected] 

Featured Image Credit: Alamy

Topics: News, Tesla, Coronavirus, China

Joe Harker
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