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Boeing shuts down Washington state factories due to coronavirus threat

Boeing shuts down Washington state factories due to coronavirus threat
Operations at Boeing factories in the state of Washington were suspended on Wednesday for two weeks in order to reduce Covid-19 risks after several workers contracted the virus.

The measure affects up to 70,000 employees in the Puget Sound region, who the company said would receive paid leave during the halt.

Boeing explained that the decision was made in order “to ensure the well-being of employees, their families and the local community.” It said it will be conducting additional deep cleaning activities at impacted sites and establishing rigorous criteria for the return to work.

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The decision to halt operations comes after several Boeing production workers were diagnosed with coronavirus.

The International Association of Machinists, a union representing Boeing employees, told its members that one of the workers at the Boeing plant in Everett, Washington died of complications from the disease.

Separately on Wednesday, Reuters reported, citing its sources, that Boeing plans to restart 737 MAX production by May, ending a months-long halt as a result of a safety ban on its best-selling jet. Production of the aircraft has been stopped since January due to problems with regulatory approvals, following the airplane’s two fatal crashes.

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