Tyson to reopen Waterloo meatpacking plant on Thursday


Two weeks after being closed following an outbreak of COVID-19, the Tyson Fresh Meats plant in Waterloo is set to reopen.

Company officials say Tyson’s largest pork processing facility will resume limited operations on Thursday.

Today, workers are invited to tour the plant to see enhanced safety features that were put in place while the facility was idle.

Tyson temporarily closed the Waterloo plant April 22 after local health officials linked a rapid rise in Black Hawk County’s coronavirus cases to the facility.

Iowa Department of Public Health officials said Tuesday that 17 percent of the plant’s 2,800 employees – 444 – tested positive for COVID-19. Late last week, local health officials and community leaders toured the facility to review Tyson’s protocol to safely resume operations.

Company officials say all Waterloo employees returning to work have been tested for COVID-19. Employees who have tested positive will remain on sick leave until released by health officials to return to work.

Employees who have not been tested will be unable to return to their jobs and all new hires will be tested prior to starting their job.

(Elwin Huffman, KOEL, Waterloo)


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