Published: Sat, May 12, 2018
Finance | By Claude Patterson

Ford Plans to Reopen Dearborn Assembly Plant

Ford Plans to Reopen Dearborn Assembly Plant

A 2018 Ford F-150 "King Ranch" pickup truck is displayed during the North American International Auto Show in Detroit, Michigan, U.S., January 10, 2017.

The fire, which also triggered several explosions, took place May 2 at Meridian Magnesium Products of America's plant in Eaton Rapids, Mich., near Lansing, injuring two workers.

Ford shares were down slightly in after-hours trade, at $11.19.

"We're confident that any impacts will be short term", said Joe Hinrichs, president of Ford global operations, in a media call late Wednesday.

All-new Ford 2015 F-150 pickup trucks move down the final inspection line at the Ford Rouge Center in Dearborn, Mich., on November 11, 2014.

Meridian could not be reached for comment.

The company told employees that they should expect to return to work at its plants in Dearborn, Michigan and outside of Kansas City, Missouri on May 18, a Ford spokesperson said on Friday. Expedition and Navigator remain in production in Louisville, Ford said.

Ford has sold 287,000 F Series trucks in the United States in the first four months of this year, up 4% compared to a year ago. It's a key profit generator for Ford.

Ford said it had been dealing with Chinese-owned Meridian to alter creation of those affected parts into additional suppliers until the fire-damaged plant might be repaired and production resumed. At this point there is no word on just how long production of the F-150 will be halted, a Ford spokesman has said that it would last at least a few days.

Hinrichs said Ford has an 84-day supply of F-series pickups at USA dealers so "we don't anticipate losing any sales".

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