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Canadian HVAC manufacturer switches gears to make COVID-19 facemasks

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50 Napoleon employees will be working with a local Barrie, Ont. medical supplies company to produce face shields for the medical community.

Napoleon has halted the manufacturing of the grills, fireplaces and HVAC equipment that it is known for to focus on making face shields amidst the COVID-19 pandemic.

Based in Barrie, Ont., the company has teamed up with a local medical supply manufacturer to help meet the surging demand for essential medical equipment. The medical supply company had to increase production on short notice, and they needed a qualified workforce.

There are 50 Napoleon employees at the company’s Barrie plant, covering four shifts each day including midnights. The team is providing support in the areas of material handling, machine operations, assembly, engineering, and quality control.

“We wanted to help. However, our facilities are not set up for the product required for medical equipment so we quickly found how we can help by partnering with a local medical equipment producer. We have trained and re-focused Napoleon manufacturing workers to really help medical equipment colleagues deliver on surging demand at a critical time” reported Stephen Schroeter, Co-CEO for Napoleon. “We are so proud of our team for their willingness to volunteer to help where help is needed and put themselves on the frontline of this crisis.”

The Napoleon team is primarily focused on assembling and packaging face shields, which provide a wide range of protective coverage for healthcare workers including splash protection, significantly reducing the risk of contamination and protecting them against high-level diseases, such as COVID-19.

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