Floods cripple Honda factory

While Nissan and Toyota begin production in their Thai plants again, Honda is still feeling the effects of the flood that swamped its Rojan factory - the worst hit of all Thai automotive assembly plants.

Water has been flowing up to 3m deep through the plant at Ayutthaya for six weeks, says industry website goauto.com, not just halting production but wiping out stock and damaging equipment.

The factory has been off-limits for weeks, meaning a full assessment of damage has been impossible.

Honda Automobile Thailand says it still does not have a clear outlook for when it will resume car production, although limited production of motorcycles and power products is set to start at Ladkrabang.

Aerial TV shots of the Honda factory have shown cars completely underwater next to the main assembly plant, with water well up the factory walls.

If floodwaters have entered the factory at that depth, precision machinery and sensitive electrical equipment worth millions of dollars are bound to have been ruined. If so, the factory, which produces 4.5 per cent of global Honda vehicle supplies, could be closed for months for repairs.

The floods have caused ripples throughout the Honda manufacturing network, with the company slowing production at its United States and Canadian plants until the end of November due to shortages of parts made in Thailand.

- NZ Herald

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