Cooper Tire to reopen U.S. manufacturing plants

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Cooper Tire & Rubber Company announced Thursday its manufacturing plants in the United States and Serbia will begin the process of reopening and ramping up production next week. The facilities have been temporarily closed for approximately five weeks because of the COVID-19 coronavirus pandemic and its impacts.

U.S. plant locations include Findlay, Ohio; Clarksdale and Tupelo, Miss., and Texarkana, Ark. Cooper’s plant in Serbia is located in Kruševac. The company’s plant in Melksham, England, remains temporarily closed.

To help safeguard the health and safety of employees, the company has put in place a comprehensive set of return to work procedures that include required employee disclosures, increased cleaning and disinfecting of equipment, social distancing and physical barriers, visitor restrictions and other measures, the company says.

Cooper says similar procedures have been effective at its two plants in China, which reopened and began ramping up production in mid-February.

The company also announced the federal government in Mexico has now determined Cooper’s manufacturing plant there is a non-essential business and is requiring Cooper to temporarily close the plant beginning April 28. Cooper had successfully reopened its Mexico plant April 13 after it had been temporarily closed due to the coronavirus. The company says it will continue to monitor the situation and prepare to reopen as soon as appropriate.

Cooper says its distribution centers around the world continue to operate and flow product to customers.

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