Indian auto major Mahindra has said it is retooling their Detroit manufacturing facility to make medical personal protection equipment for healthcare workers combating the COVID-19 pandemic that has infected over 2 million globally.
Medical supplies like surgical masks, gowns and ventilators are required in massive number across the globe because of the coronavirus pandemic that surfaced in central China's Wuhan city last year and spread to at least 185 countries and territories.
Mahindra is working closely with the State of Michigan, its Congressional Delegation, National Association of Manufacturers, Michigan Manufacturer's Association, Oakland County and others to continually evaluate what it can do to contribute to the COVID-19 fight, the company said in a statement on Wednesday.
"We have a company full of people who love to design and make things and they're not people who like to stand on the sidelines. We have ideas coming in from across the company and we're looking hard at all of them, Rick Haas, president and CEO, of Mahindra Automotive North America said in the statement.
The Indian company is retooling its Detroit manufacturing facility to produce aspiration box with innovative ease-of-use design; face shields and masks to local frontline healthcare workers and first responders and additional products to be identified through coordination between the State of Michigan and National Association of Manufacturers.
According to the Johns Hopkins University data, over 2 million people are infected by the virus and more than 136,000 people have died of the disease globally.
According to Detroit news, roughly 20 employees at Mahindra's Auburn Hills manufacturing site are making aspiration boxes from the plastic polycarbonate windshields used in their vehicles, as well as face shields and masks.
The boxes shield nurses and doctors when they remove a COVID-19 patient's intubation tubes, the daily reported.
"Other boxes can fog, but the version from the windshield material won't. It also is collapsible with six of the Mahindra-designed boxes taking up the space of a traditional one, Detroit News said.
"We had the material on hand to get started. We're also making face masks, but we're having challenges keeping supply and material in house. Everyone is trying to do that," Haas was quoted as saying.
Mahindra is in the running to manufacture the next generation delivery vehicle for the US Postal Service.
It has stopped production of ROXOR vehicles in response to the coronavirus pandemic, Rich Ansell, vice president of marketing for Mahindra was quoted as saying by MLive-The Flint Journal.
Mahindra food truck would distribute free meals to Oakland County healthcare workers and first-responders.
It is also launching the ROXOR DELIVERS programme that supports ROXOR dealers across the country who have had to close due to state mandates and consumers who are unable or unwilling to leave their homes. The program will deliver ROXORs right to consumers' doors limiting social interaction.