General Motors working toward June 30 reopening

Friday, May 23rd 2003, 12:00 am
By: News On 6

OKLAHOMA CITY (AP) _ General Motors is working toward reopening its Oklahoma City plant June 30, the company told employees in a recorded voicemail message.

A tornado hit the plant May 8, peeling the roof and metal siding off a paint shop, destroying several cooling towers and knocking out the powerhouse.

``We may not make it, but we are going to work toward that date,'' the message said. ``If you were able to see the devastation on May 8, you know what an extraordinary amount of work has been done to be able to forecast this date.''

Plant officials have declined to announce to the media a target date for reopening.

General Motors is recalling 800 assembly line workers to the plant Thursday to finish work on 508 Chevrolet Trailblazers and GMC Envoys left on the conveyor belts the night of the twister. The vehicles in the general assembly area were not damaged, though the tornado damaged about 600 vehicles in the paint shop and several more that were ready to be sent to dealerships.

No employees were injured in the tornado. About 1200 workers were at the plant and hid in tornado shelters.

Two truckers driving into the plant when the twister hit had minor injuries.