Elon Musk has defied a county order and re-opened his Tesla factory in Fremont, California on Monday.
The 48 year-old multi-billionaire took to Twitter on Monday night to ask that if anyone is arrested over the decision to reopen the factory, it should be him:
Alameda County rules state factories must maintain “minimum basic operations”, such as security and safeguarding inventory.
If Tesla resumes factory operation without first submitting a safety plan to the county, it will be breaking these rules.
In response to Musk’s initial tweet, Alameda County said in a statement posted to Twitter:
We are addressing this matter using the same phased approach we use for other businesses that have violated the order in the past, and we hope that Tesla will likewise comply without further enforcement measures.
The full statement states Alameda County is waiting for a finalised “site-specific plan” from Tesla:
As of 7 May, the California guidance and checklist for manufacturing offers a detailed checklist for companies to comply with before they’re allowed to open back up.
This means companies like Tesla must perform detailed risk assessments, train employees on how to minimise the spread of Covid-19, implement disinfecting protocols, as well as physical distancing guidelines.
California’s governor, Gavin Newsom, said during his daily press briefing on Monday that he had “great expectations that we can work through at the county levels”.
We look forward to many, many decades of that relationship with Tesla.
At the time of writing, California has almost 68,000 confirmed cases of coronavirus and 2,770 deaths.