The earthquake and subsequent devastation in Japan has prompted Toyota to warn its U.S. plants that they may have to shut down, due to parts shortages from Japan.
Company spokesman Mike Goss said that the 13 plants in the U.S., Canada and Mexico have been alerted to the potential halt in operations, but that doesn’t mean that any or all of them will have to, CNN reports.
“We expect some kind of interruptions,” Goss said.
None of Toyota’s car factories in Japan have been working since the earthquake hit on March 11, but they were able to resume the manufacturing of some parts recently.
“They did resume parts production for overseas and for replacement parts,” Goss said, “but that was just the suppliers that were capable of doing it.”
The stoppages in Japan will ultimately affect even those suppliers in North America who provide parts, because some components need to be acquired from the factories in Japan.
One bright spot for the 25,000 manufacturing and R&D workers in North America — Toyota usually continues to pay employees even when there are production shut downs, or finds them other work to do.