Sun finally shines bright for Elon Musk, in a rather lone war that he had waged with the county of Alameda in the state of California. Amid a public backing that Tesla received from President Trump on Tuesday, the Alameda county has now announced that it may allow Tesla to open up its Fremont plant, keeping in mind strict adherence to health and safety protocols.
Not even a day after defying the county’s orders of only resuming ‘minimum basic operations’, the billionaire has received some solid support from the President of the United States who urged that the company be allowed to “open the plant, NOW” on his twitter.
The Alameda County has now announced that the vehicle factory can be allowed to reopen as soon as next week provided the company strictly adheres to the safety implementations. Some of these measures, which are standard for all other major US auto manufacturers as well, include temperature screenings, the installation of barriers to separate work areas and protective equipment for workers.
The County, along with help from the Fremont Police Department will keep an eye on the plant workers’ activities, making sure that social distancing and other health measures are taken care of. This came in after Alameda County health officer reviewed the detailed reopening guidelines that Tesla had prepared and displayed satisfaction.
during this two week period, we would allow additional approved activities for local businesses, including Tesla, as previously planned. The Health Officer Order referenced and indicators are available here https://t.co/TzKAqnfJFs @AlamedaCounty @ACSOSheriffs
— Alameda County Public Health Department (@Dare2BWell) May 13, 2020
According to Trump, the opening can now be done “fast and safely”. An elated Musk responded by saying “Thank You!”. Musk had earlier decided to let 30% of the average workforce resume operations and that no one would be forced to come to work if they don’t want to.
Last week, Tesla filed a lawsuit against the Alameda County questioning its decision to keep the Vehicle Factory closed. The County Health officials made it clear that the automaker company had to get their plan of action approved before resuming to function fully. Now, Tesla needs to update their Prevention and Control Plan with the required safety plans during the course of their “minimum basic operations.”
On Monday Gavin Newsom, Governor of California, had mentioned that conversations between the County and Tesla had been highly constructive and that he hoped and believed that the issue would be resolved soon. Newsom has also been in favour of the plant’s reopening and has spoken well about Musk on several occasions.
Trump has acquainted with Musk several times in past and has also bashed California uncountable times for a number of issues including immigration and environmental concerns. The President is also looking forward to quickly restarting a majority of the Country’s economies and for citizens to start work again after facing a huge dip due to the pandemic.
Alameda County on its end, has been sufficiently transparent in vocalising that their public health restraints and safety laws might be more stringent as compared to other areas of the country. Scott Haggerty, the Alameda County supervisor for the district where Tesla’s factory is located, had talked with The New York Times last Saturday, and mentioned how his county was working to get Tesla permissions, along the same timelines as other automakers.
On Tuesday, he accused Musk of misinterpreting and misreporting what he said, on Twitter.
Two workers out of the ones who went back to work reported how they were asked to watch a safety-training video along with being physically separated through plastic curtain barriers. They were also provided with masks and thermal scanners were used to measure the body temperature of each employee. Musk had also issued a 37 page document detailing all the measures that the automaker would undertake to ensure health and safety.