Auto assembly plants report little to none damage by earthquake

Auto assembly plants report little to none damage by earthquake

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Automakers reported no injuries and just minor damage at their facilities located in Central Mexico, where a magnitude 7.1 earthquake struck last Tuesday the most populated region in the country.

Nissan Motor Co., the largest automaker in Mexico, said there were no deaths or injuries at its Mexico City headquarters or its assembly plant nearby in Cuernavaca, Morelos, a neighbor state of Puebla and the country’s capital.

Workers were sent home on Tuesday, the company announced in a statement. "Our manufacturing plant in Cuernavaca and headquarters in Mexico City were evacuated and employees were encouraged to return home. We will assess those facilities for damage before determining when they can return to safe operation. We expect to have more to share in the coming days," it said.

Volkswagen and Audi in the state of Puebla, where the epicenter took place, halted production temporarily to inspect buildings and allow workers to check on family.

VW's plant in Puebla, the automaker’s biggest site outside Germany, halted production after the quake so that the plant could be inspected, but only minor damage was found, the company said. The plant was restarted for the Tuesday late shift, and administrative personnel returned Wednesday.

Audi's crossover plant in San Jose Chiapa, Puebla, sustained no damage and workers were unhurt, but the second shift ended early on Tuesday and the third shift was canceled so employees could check on loved ones, the company announced.

Ford said that there was no damage or lost production at its factory in Cuautitlan, State of Mexico, which also borders Mexico City.

General Motors’ operates an engine and casting complex, and an engineering center in Toluca, also in the State of Mexico. Those facilities were not significantly impacted by the earthquake, just “some minor damage, nothing structural that would affect operations,” according to a statement.

Fiat Chrysler said that it conducted an exhaustive review of the structural integrity of its assembly operations in Toluca and its headquarters in Mexico City and found all of its facilities in shape to resume normal operations.

Toyota Motor Corp. said its Mexico City headquarters was functioning normally and all of its employees were safe.

The rest of the auto production facilities in Mexico are located either in the Bajio or the North region, too far to be affected by the earthquake.