The Call Up: GM's Truck Plants Are 'All Hands on Deck'

Steph Willems
by Steph Willems
the call up gms truck plants are 8216 all hands on deck

According to a report in the Detroit Free Press, General Motors’ truck plants now resemble Tesla plants on the eve of the end of a fiscal quarter.

The need to crank out as many pickups as possible — essential for replenishing a depleted inventory while boosting flagging sales figures — has apparently brought both management and laid-off workers to the assembly line.

The report claims GM plans to call back hundreds of formerly laid-off workers in August to offset a manpower shortage born of several reasons, one of them being COVID-19. Freep says Fort Wayne Assembly in Indiana is shy about 1,000 workers, some 200 of them because of the coronavirus. Extra workers are also needed in Flint, Michigan, and Arlington Assembly in Texas.

The once-unemployed GM workers would be walking into permanent jobs, union leaders have been told.

It seems the need is most pressing at Fort Wayne, however. The plant, which builds the Chevrolet Silverado and GMC Sierra light-duty pickups, is in danger of not meeting its daily targets, one source claimed, with plant staff apparently going to great lengths to ensure the line doesn’t grind to a halt.

“They’re at full schedule, but they have every single person on that assembly line, including management, and management is not supposed to be on the line,” the source told Freep. “It’s all hands on deck, just to build trucks.”

News of the worker call-up will be music to the ears of employees expected to be laid off at the end of the month at GM’s Spring Hill, Tennessee assembly plant, home to a brace of Cadillac crossovers and the GMC Acadia. There, GM’s cutting a third shift to align production with tepid demand. Same goes for workers laid off from Detroit-Hamtramck.

While the automaker wouldn’t admit to management joining workers on the assembly line, it did say problems persist due to COVID-19.

“We are operating our plants as efficiently as possible while accommodating team members who are not reporting to work due to concerns about COVID-19 in the community,” GM spokesman David Barnas told the publication.

[Image: General Motors]

Join the conversation
12 of 14 comments
  • Dukeisduke Dukeisduke on Jul 15, 2020

    Because what the country needs is more ugly trucks.

    • See 9 previous
    • SSJeep SSJeep on Jul 16, 2020

      @Lorenzo There is a massive shortage of Silverado and Sierra trucks nationwide. Dealers near me that would normally have 50 on the lot might have 5 today... if they are lucky.

  • AVT AVT on Jul 16, 2020

    I think a lot of it has to do with credit lending for these items. Since covid, getting an auto loan (especially if your credit was not in the good range) became a lot more difficult. In general, ram buyers tend to be lower on the fico spectrum than buyers of Ford and chevy's. I know an individual who was looking at a 2500 Laramie but got rejected on the loan once covid happened. Ford got hit hard with supplier shortages as part of covid (in particular they're aluminum supply chain). My guess is they are prioritizing f150's over HD's until they get back up to speed. Chevy is a decent middle ground between price, performance, and features. Having that balance is what is allowing them to move the metal (that and an apparently highly dedicated workforce if they got management working hand in hand with everyone else to build product). I wonder if ford or fca will do something similar?

  • SCE to AUX I charge at home 99% of the time, on a Level 2 charger I installed myself in 2012 for my Leaf. My house is 1967, 150-Amp service, gas dryer and furnace; everything else is electric with no problems. I switched from gas HW to electric HW last year, when my 18-year-old tank finally failed.I charge at a for-pay station maybe a couple times a year.I don't travel more than an hour each way in my Ioniq 1 EV, so I don't deal much with public chargers. Despite a big electric rate increase this year, my car remains ridiculously cheap to operate.
  • ToolGuy 38:25 to 45:40 -- Let's all wait around for the stupid ugly helicopter. 😉The wheels and tires are cool, as in a) carbon fiber is a structural element not decoration and b) they have some sidewall.Also like the automatic fuel adjustment (gasoline vs. ethanol).(Anyone know why it's more powerful on E85? Huh? Huh?)
  • Ja-GTI So, seems like you have to own a house before you can own a BEV.
  • Kwik_Shift Good thing for fossil fuels to keep the EVs going.
  • Carlson Fan Meh, never cared for this car because I was never a big fan of the Gen 1 Camaro. The Gen 1 Firebird looked better inside and out and you could get it with the 400.The Gen 2 for my eyes was peak Camaro as far as styling w/those sexy split bumpers! They should have modeled the 6th Gen after that.