After being closed for five weeks, the Cooper Tire plant in Tupelo will start the process of reopening next week.

The plant, which opened in 1984, employs some 1,300 workers.

Cooper officials announced today that its manufacturing plants in the U.S. and Serbia “will begin the process of reopening and ramping up production next week.”

U.S. plant locations include Findlay, Ohio; Clarksdale and Tupelo, Mississippi and Texarkana, Arkansas. Cooper’s plant in Serbia is located in Kruševac. The company’s plant in Melksham, England remains temporarily closed.

To help safeguard the health and safety of employees, the company said it has put in place a comprehensive set of return to work procedures that include required employee disclosures, increased cleaning and disinfecting of equipment, social distancing and physical barriers, visitor restrictions, and other measures. Similar procedures have been effective at Cooper’s two plants in China, which reopened and began ramping up production in mid-February.

The company also announced that the federal government in Mexico has now determined that Cooper’s manufacturing plant there is a non-essential business, and is requiring Cooper to temporarily close the plant beginning April 28. Cooper had successfully reopened its Mexico plant April 13 after it had been temporarily closed due to coronavirus and its impacts. The company will continue to monitor the situation and prepare to reopen as soon as appropriate.

Cooper’s distribution centers around the globe have continued to operate and flow product to customers.

— Daily Journal