Cooper Tire & Rubber Co. says it will begin the process of reopening and ramping up its manufacturing operations in the United States next week.

Cooper's U.S. plants are in Findlay, Ohio; Clarksdale and Tupelo, Miss.; and Texarkana, Ark.

Combined, Cooper's plants in the U.S. have a total production capacity of 97,000 units when operating at full throttle.

The tiremarker also will start to reopen and ramp up production at its plant in Serbia. (The company's plant in Melksham, England, remains temporarily closed.)

"The facilities have been temporarily closed for approximately five weeks due to coronavirus and its impacts," say Cooper officials.

"To help safeguard the health and safety of employees, the company has put in place a comprehensive set of return to work procedures that include required employee disclosures, increased cleaning and disinfecting of equipment, social distancing and physical barriers, visitor restrictions, and other measures."

Similar procedures have been effective at Cooper’s two plants in China, which reopened and began
ramping up production in mid-February, according to Cooper officials.

The company also announced that the federal government in Mexico has now determined that Cooper’s manufacturing plant there is a non-essential business, and is requiring Cooper to temporarily close the plant, beginning April 28.

Cooper had successfully reopened its Mexico plant April 13 after it had been temporarily closed due to coronavirus and its impacts. The company "will continue to monitor the situation and prepare to reopen as soon as appropriate."

Cooper says its distribution centers around the globe continue to operate "and flow product to customers."

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