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Tesla gets exemption from new Covid-19 California health orders

02 September 2020, Berlin: Tech entrepreneur Elon Musk arrives with a face mask at the CDU Executive Board meeting in Westhafen. Photo: Fabian Sommer / dpa (Photo by Fabian Sommer / Image Alliance via Getty Images)

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The California Department of Public Health designated Tesla employees as “essential workers” in the state, and exempted the company from Covid-19 Health Orders announced by Gov. Gavin Newsom this week. The designation means that the Tesla car plant in the US in Fremont, California, can continue to operate according to the previous Covid-19 safety plan.

The new home restriction order affects the majority of California residents starting Saturday. It also imposes a curfew and demands that unnecessary work and gatherings be stopped between ten in the evening and five in the morning

In response to CNBC’s inquiry about how the curfew affects Tesla employees, CPHD wrote:

“The limited stay at home order does not apply to these employees as they are considered key factors – manufacturing is listed as the primary workforce. Find more here. The critical manufacturing sector identifies several industries to serve as the core of the sector including transportation equipment manufacturing products. During operation, this sector should follow Directing the industry to manufacturing“.

Local authorities in Alameda County, where Fremont is located, can do this Place additional restrictions on future state directives, but it has not yet done so.

A spokesperson for the Alameda County Public Health Department declined to answer any questions about Tesla, but sent a press release to CNBC from November 16.

The statement indicates, among other things, that Alameda County is facing an increase in Covid-19 virus cases and hospitalizations. The county is now at California’s “purple layer”, the state’s most restrictive “reopening framework” level. Therefore, as of midnight on November 18, “all activities and sectors must comply with state requirements for districts in the purple layer.”

“As the situation evolves, we may need to further restrict activities to slow the spread of the virus,” the Alameda County Department of Public Health statement also says.

Meanwhile, the California Department of Public Health confirmed it had issued Guidance Back in July, for the manufacturing industries to “support a safer, less risky environment for workers.” This directive has not been updated with any new requirements or precautions for workers in a plant environment.

When the Covid-19 virus emerged in California earlier this year, the Alameda County Health Authority asked Tesla to roll back to a minimum of essential operations in Fremont, with an acceptable workplace safety plan in place that would protect factory workers from the new coronavirus. .

Tesla and CEO Elon Musk defied health orders, seeming to face no repercussions.

However, Musk has since insulted the California business environment.

For example, he tweeted on October 30, 2020: “I have spent more than half of my life in California and love the state. But, honestly, I think CA has had a winning problem for a very long time. Like a sports team with so many tournaments, it is becoming increasingly difficult to avoid Self-satisfaction and a sense of entitlement. “

On November 14, Musk revealed that he was “likely” to have a “moderate” case of Covid-19, and was experiencing symptoms.

The news that the Tesla plant can continue to operate according to safety plans previously agreed upon by provincial and state health authorities will come as a relief to some Tesla shareholders.

CFO Zachary Kirkorn said during a third-quarter earnings call that Tesla is still aiming to deliver 500,000 EVs in 2020. Even with the new Shanghai plant online this year, that number remains a challenge for Musk’s car company. In 2019, Tesla delivered approximately 367,500 vehicles.

Tesla did not immediately respond to a request for comment.

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