Harley-Davidson suspending operations at Springettbury Twp. plant

Logan Hullinger
York Dispatch
The Harley-Davidson York plant.
Wednesday, May 15, 2019.
John A. Pavoncello photo

Harley-Davidson Inc.'s assembly plant in Springettsbury Township is one of three facilities operated by the motorcycle giant that will suspend operations until the end of the month because of concerns about the spread of the coronavirus.

In a news release on Wednesday night, the Milwaukee-based company announced it would be "temporarily suspending the majority of production at its U.S. manufacturing facilities" until March 29.

Most work at the two other facilities, both in Wisconsin, was also suspended.

 “We recognize the unprecedented nature of this global crisis," said company CEO Jochen Zeitz. "In order to best support our employees and following the social distancing guidance issued by public health authorities, we are temporarily suspending the majority of production at our U.S. manufacturing facilities."

The decision came after an employee at the company's Pilgrim Road Powertrain Operations facility in Wisconsin tested positive for COVID-19 earlier Wednesday.

The company on Monday also sent home all nonessential employees at its Milwaukee headquarters and Product Development Center to work remotely until late March, the release states.

Harley-Davidson events nationwide will be cancelled until mid-April.

The plant in Springettsbury had about 950 employees in 2018 when the company announced it would add an additional 450 there because Harley-Davidson was shuttering its facility in Kansas City. The Springettsbury plant had about 2000 employees a decade earlier.

Earlier Wednesday, General Motors, Ford and Fiat Chrysler suspended all of their North American production plants to mitigate the spread of the virus.

State officials on Wednesday confirmed there were 133 confirmed cases of coronavirus in the state, including one death in Northampton County.

State officials also revealed two of the cases were in York County.

— Logan Hullinger can be reached at lhullinger@yorkdispatch.com or via Twitter at @LoganHullYD.