The Automobile Parts Manufacturers Association has been playing a key role in the provision of personal protection equipment and ventilators to help out with the COVID19 epidemic. At his news conference Thursday Prime Minister Trudeau made reference to the fact that a million facemasks have been delivered to Hamilton. The masks were delivered earlier this week by Flavio Volpe the President of APMA, which represents large parts manufacturers like Linemar and Magna International as well as many smaller firms. Researchers at McMaster University have been tasked with evaluating prototype masks produced by Woodbridge Foam Corporation which normally manufactures headliners and trunk liners for the automotive industry. Woodbridge has been working around the clock.
Volpe appeared in a news conference last week with the province’s health minister and minister of economic development. Thursday, he told Doug Ford they believe they can make millions of masks each week, but couldn’t get a lab to certify them for at least two or three weeks. McMaster is now fast-tracking the testing process.
APMA is also working with members to get them to re-tool to produce ventilators. Three of Canada’s largest auto parts manufacturers, the Automotive Parts Manufacturers Association and the province of Ontario have agreed to focus much of their ventilator building efforts on three projects. Magna International Inc., Linamar Corp. and Martinrea International Inc., along with the APMA, reached the agreement with the province. The three projects include ventilators built by Toronto-based Thornhill Medical, Brampton, Ont.-based O-Two Medical Technologies Inc. and General Motors Co. and Ventec Life Systems, which partnered to build ventilators at the GM plant in Indiana.
AMPA Vice President Vince Guglielmo tole the Bay Observer “We are moving mountains quite frankly by mobilizing the manufacturers with their engineers and our institutions, who can make things in the millions. Ventilators as mentioned and broadly covered. Masks are happening as noted.
And plastic face shields are next in the millions (not by 3D print as you’ve seen(we’ll never get to numbers needed) but only by our manufacturing community with heavy injection plastic processes. Followed by gowns. Stay tuned.”