In this file:
· Cause of fire at JBS facility under investigation (WI)
· JBS slaughterhouse in Brooks to increase production after COVID-19 outbreak (CAN)
· Tolleson will test 200 city and JBS employees for COVID-19 as virus hits meatpacking industry hard (AZ)
· Colorado health officials adjust data, reduce number of COVID-19 cases at JBS plant to 264 (CO)
Cause of fire at JBS facility under investigation
May 20, 2020
GREEN BAY, Wis. (WBAY) -- Fire Marshals are currently investigating the cause of a fire at JBS Wednesday afternoon.
According to the Green Bay Area Metro Fire Department, crews were called to the building on Lime Kiln Road for a trailer fire just after 1:30 p.m.
When they arrived, crews were able to knock down the bulk of the fire in the semi trailer, which had backed up to a loading dock.
Crews then contained fire from spreading into the building before putting it out.
The building was then ventilated with the use of a Brown County Sheriff's Office air boat.
At this time, fire officials say the fire started on the reefer on the semi trailer, however the cause is still unknown.
Damage is estimated at...
JBS slaughterhouse in Brooks to increase production after COVID-19 outbreak
Meat-processing plant had scaled back to 1 shift, but didn't close, after worker death
Sarah Rieger, CBC News (Canada)
May 20, 2020
A slaughterhouse near Brooks, Alta., where more than 600 workers contracted COVID-19, will increase its production from one shift to two on Thursday.
There are currently 11 active COVID-19 cases among workers employed at the JBS Foods Canada facility, out of a total of 650 cases. One worker has died.
JBS continued to operate the Brooks plant through the height of its outbreak, despite calls from the union for the plant to close, but had scaled production down to one shift.
Rob Meijer, a spokesperson for JBS, said moving from one shift back to two will not increase the number of people in the plant at any single time.
"The health and safety of our team members is our top priority. We have been working closely with public health and labour officials each and every day to implement rigorous risk mitigation practices throughout our facility," he said.
Meijer noted that since January the plant has implemented more than 100 preventative measures, like temperature checks for staff and increased cleaning.
Alberta Occupational Health and Safety (OHS) is investigating the Brooks JBS plant and the Cargill slaughterhouse near High River, Alta., which at one point was the site of the largest COVID-19 outbreak in North America, and saw more than 950 workers test positive and three deaths connected to the outbreak.
The two plants together process about 70 per cent of Canada's beef.
While much of Alberta began the first phase of reopening last week, Brooks is awaiting a decision from the province as to when its restaurants and hair salons will be back in business due to a continued threat of infection in the city.
A total of 1,090 people out of the approximately 15,000 who live in the small southern Alberta city have contracted COVID-19.
The United Food and Commercial Workers union, which represents workers at JBS and Cargill...
Tolleson will test 200 city and JBS employees for COVID-19 as virus hits meatpacking industry hard
Joshua Bowling, Arizona Republic
May 20, 2020
Tolleson is partnering with state lawmakers and nonprofit Valle del Sol to administer COVID-19 tests to 200 employees from the city and JBS Tolleson, a meatpacking plant with nearly 1,200 employees.
The local JBS plant has continued to operate throughout the pandemic even though meat processing plants around the country have struggled with a high number of virus infections.
Tolleson Mayor Anna Tovar said city officials have been unable to get data on how many, if any, JBS employees there have tested positive.
Sen. Lupe Contreras, Rep. Diego Espinoza and Rep. Lorenzo Sierra, whose districts all include Tolleson, partnered with the city to secure testing kits.
City and JBS employees can get free tests at the Tolleson Fire Department, off 92nd Avenue and Van Buren Street, on Thursday and Friday. The city and JBS are internally sending employees directions to make a testing appointment...
Tolleson: Number of JBS employees with COVID-19 unknown
JBS facilities across the U.S. have had hundreds of confirmed COVID-19 cases.
A JBS plant in Greeley, Colorado, has more than 300 positive cases. Other JBS sites have seen surges in cases, too.
"The city does not know, nor does the state, nor does the department of health," Tovar said. "All inquiries of that number have been sent to their corporate office."
JBS USA spokeswoman Nikki Richardson first told The Arizona Republic the company isn't disclosing the number of employees who have contracted the new coronavirus "out of respect for the families."
When pressed, she said the company wouldn't share the numbers "as a matter of company policy."
"Given the evolving nature of this situation, we are not attempting to report the number of impacted team members," Richardson said in a statement...
... City Councilman John Carnero said he thinks the city needs to find out how many JBS employees have COVID-19. And if it can't, city leaders need to tell the public why they don't have that information, he said.
"I think the public has a right to know what’s going on — or what we don’t know," he said...
Colorado health officials adjust data, reduce number of COVID-19 cases at JBS plant to 264
by: Eric Ruble, KDVR (CO)
May 20, 2020
GREELEY, Colo. (KDVR) — The Colorado Department of Public Health and Environment released new data Wednesday on COVID-19 outbreaks in the state.
The number of cases at the JBS meat plant in Greeley now stands at 264, down from 316.
The CDPHE said the change is due to a number of reasons.
First, the state began splitting JBS cases into two groups: those at the plant and those at corporate offices. In addition to the 264 cases at the plant, there are five cases at JBS corporate.
Additionally, some JBS employees’ family members were being included in the original count. They have since been removed.
Finally, there was one death previously attributed to JBS, but that person worked at a different company.
Overall, seven JBS employees have died from the coronavirus: six at the Greeley plant and one at the corporate offices.
Below is the full statement from the state regarding the change: