SAN FRANCISCO—On Wednesday, May 12, the Alameda County Public Health Department announced on Twitter that they reviewed Tesla’s plan to reopen, and decided to allow the factory to operate again, as long as the plant maintains the worker safety recommendations it agreed to.
“If Tesla’s Prevention and Control Plan includes these updates, and the public health indicators remain stable or improve, we have agreed that Tesla can begin to augment their Minimum Business Operations this week in preparation for possible reopening as soon as next week,” the Twitter update reads.
The Freemont Police Department will periodically verify whether Tesla will hold up to its part of the agreement.
“We will be working with the Fremont PD to verify Tesla is adhering to physical distancing and that agreed upon health and safety measures are in place for the safety of their workers as they prepare for full production.”
The dispute started on Monday, May 11, when Elon Musk tweeted that Tesla would re-start production at its Bay Area factory despite restrictions, and indicated that he was willing to face arrest as a result of his decision.
“Tesla is restarting production today against Alameda county rules. I will be on the line with everyone else. If anyone is arrested, I ask that it only be me,” Musk tweeted.
Previously, the Alameda Health Department prohibited the reopening of the factory as it was deemed a “non-essential business,” and it was restricted from continuing full operations during the statewide effort to slow the spread of COVID-19.
As a result of the agreement, Tesla’s plant was given the approval to prepare to reopen this week and resume normal operations as soon as next week. It is still unclear whether or not Musk will face any consequences for disobeying California law.
In response to the agreement, Tesla released a plan to maintain worker safety, such as the wearing of gloves and masks, installing barriers between workers in the factory, adhering to social distancing guidelines, and checking worker’s temperatures.