Nearly two months ago, Bentley closed its Crewe factory due to the accelerated rate of COVID-19 infections. But with the UK slowly containing the spread of the deadly virus and easing restrictions, Bentley has decided to restart operations while following strict health and safety protocols to keep its workforce safe.
Under the company's 'Come Back Stronger' program, the Crewe-based luxury brand will follow a phased ramp-up of production, along with the implementation of 250 new hygiene and social distancing processes. For now, only the Bentayga and Mulsanne production lines have resumed operations as the Continental GT and Flying Spur production lines are set to resume next week.
The Crewe factory has been vastly redesigned and now allows workers to maintain a 2-meter distance from one another. There are also one-way movement paths, as well as washrooms that have been reconfigured to reduce the number of people being able to use them in lieu of the strict social distancing measures. Meanwhile, each production line will be running at approximately 50% for a number of weeks and will gradually increase over the coming weeks.
“Now is the right time for the business to come back stronger. We have introduced extensive new working measures to protect our colleagues, our families, and our customers and we are confident, following the work of so many people, that being at Bentley will be as safe for our colleagues as being anywhere else,” said Adrian Hallmark, Chairman, and CEO of Bentley.
Aside from introducing safety measures to protect its workforce, Bentley has also provided personal protective equipment (PPEs) for its employees. These include face masks, gloves, and goggles. In addition, constant temperature checks will be conducted to ensure that the employees on-site are healthy. Enhanced cleaning routines shall also be implemented as a way to keep the factory free from the disease. Plastic partitions have been installed in office areas, as well as in the mess halls in order to keep employees safe during staff meetings, lunch breaks, etc.
“We have a strong order bank, around eight months of customer orders to manufacture, established parts supply routes, and patient customers who are looking to receive their extraordinary cars as soon as possible. We will ramp up in a controlled, measured way to ensure we manage this continued demand, and look ahead and in spite of this interruption continue on our journey to lead sustainable luxury mobility in the future,” added Hallmark.
With eight months of customer orders to finish, Bentley's decision to resume operations couldn't come at a better time. So if you happen to have a pending delivery from Bentley, don't worry as the factory in Crewe will soon have it assembled and shipped to you. All you have to do is patiently wait and continue following social distancing guidelines to keep COVID-19 at bay.