JCB to Restart U.K. Factory for Covid-19 Ventilators


JCB in the United Kingdom is poised to restart production at a factory closed as a result of the Coronavirus crisis in order to join the global effort to manufacture ventilators.

The company received a direct appeal from U.K. Prime Minister Boris Johnson earlier this month to help ease the national ventilator shortage. As a result, JCB chairman Lord Bamford promised to help in any way the company could and immediately mobilized a research and engineering team to examine potential ways to assist.

The factory in Uttoxeter, Staffordshire, U.K., which has been closed for nearly two weeks as a result of the Coronavirus crisis, will switch from making cabs for JCB equipment to making special steel housings for a brand-new design of ventilator from Dyson. A minimum of 10,000 of the JCB housings are earmarked for manufacture once Dyson receives regulatory approval for its design.

The first prototypes of the housings have been delivered to Dyson after rolling off the production line. Mass production of the housings could start in a matter of days, JCB says.

JCB is a worldwide producer of backhoe loaders, telehandlers, CTLs, and more.