Bridgestone Americas (Bridgestone) has announced a temporary phased shutdown of its manufacturing facilities in North America and Latin America, including Williamsburg's Firestone.

The temporary shutdown for Bridgestone will begin this weekend with all facilities planning to resume normal operations on or before Sunday, April 12.

Firestone in Williamsburg will not shut down until next weekend.

The company said it will continue to monitor the situation closely and adjust response plans and activities as necessary.

"Our most important priority is to ensure the well-being and safety of our employees and the integrity of our operations," Emily Weaver, director of communications for Bridgestone Americas, Inc. said in an email. "We are continuing to monitor advice from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), World Health Organization (WHO) and local governments, as well as government regulations in countries where our employees work and travel. As the coronavirus situation continues to escalate, we are updating our response plans accordingly." 

The company said in a press release that it has sufficient supply of product to meet customer demand and its distribution centers, plant warehouses and logistics teams will continue to fill orders, but is executing this temporary shutdown to align supply to the predicted demand in the market.

"We’ve been preparing for this possibility and are following our rapid response plans developed through our Enterprise Crisis Management Team. This team has been assessing the situation daily and consulting federal, state and local officials, as well as health organizations to coordinate risk mitigation and business continuity strategies," Weaver said.

"Bridgestone Americas is closely monitoring the situation both in terms of teammate safety and welfare, as well as business continuity," she added. "Cross-functional teams are meeting daily to evaluate the impacts to the regions in which we operate as well as mitigate any potential impacts to our supply chain."

"As the company carefully monitors the coronavirus situation, it is continuing to take action in all aspects of operations to ensure the health and safety of our employees while also addressing the needs of customers and the market," the company said in a press release.

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