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Boeing Co. on Thursday said it will resume commercial airline production at its Puget Sound facilities next week, utilizing a phased approach.
"Approximately 27,000 people in the Puget Sound area will return to production of the 747, 767, 777 and 787 programs," the company said, adding, "The 737 program will resume working toward restarting production of the 737 MAX."
Boeing also said employees who can telecommute will continue to work from home.
Boeing said it has taken extra precautions and is instituting procedures to keep workers safe and to fight the spread of Covid-19. Among the practices being instituted, Boeing said, are staggered shift start times to reduce the flow of employees and requiring face coverings for workers in its Washington locations. Boeing also said it will provide personal protective equipment to "employees working in areas where physical distancing cannot be maintained for an extended period."
Employees in the 737, 747, 767 and 777 programs will return as early as third shift on April 20, with most returning to work by April 21, Boeing said. Those in the 787 program will return as early as third shift April 23, with most returning to work by April 24.
Stan Deal, president and chief executive of Boeing Commercial Airplanes and senior executive in the Pacific Northwest, said, "This phased approach ensures we have a reliable supply base, our personal protective equipment is readily available and we have all of the necessary safety measures in place to resume essential work for our customers."
Operations at Boeing South Carolina remain suspended at this time, the company said.