The other day I was involved in an accident on the roadway just outside my house. I was driving my 1999 Ford Explorer Limited.
Of all of the vehicles I’ve owned, I’ve liked this one the most – I suspect I’ll never be able to afford such a nice ride again.
Unfortunately it is now a write-off. Thankfully I am not.
This is what the damage looks like.
A few things to note from this picture.
- I was the person on the other side of that door and I’m not damaged. (a little sore but okay) I’m not in the hospital and I’m not dead.
- Running across horizontally about midway you will notice how the metal is wrapped around a side impact crash bar. The crash bar stayed intact and straight and I can write you this because it did its job.
I’m not crediting Ford with this idea, that’s not why I’m writing this.
I’m writing this to thank the Auto Workers who put my SUV together. To thank them for simply doing their jobs right.
11 years ago my wife was killed in a head on collision on the highway. After that I experienced the negative effects of others not performing their jobs correctly. And I began to notice how much trouble and hardship is created when a person does not do their job correctly.
As I thought about my accident and looked at the damage it dawned on me that if anyone assembling the doors on my SUV had failed to do their small part correctly I might not be here today to write this …
I have no idea who they were or if they’re even there after 17 years but to the Auto Workers at whichever Ford assembly plant it was that built Ford’s Explorers for the 1999 year I say THANK YOU SO MUCH FOR DOING YOUR JOBS RIGHT. It makes a difference. Take a moment and pat yourselves on the back, please.
I’ve done some digging to try and find a proper place to point this at so maybe some of those who it refers to, the workers, might see it.
As it turns out the these Ford Explorers were built at the St. Louis Assembly Plant. That closed in 2006 and has since been demolished. Here’s a little historical piece I found while researching this.
I don’t see any Facebook groups for former Ford employees of that plant – seeing as Facebook was only a year old at that time I guess it’s understandable. So there’s no simple, one-stop, place to drop a link to this in.
Hmm …. as I looked more into it I found this video about Ford Explorer body assembly in 2 minutes. From the looks of it the body is assembled and welded by robots. The prefabbed doors are mounted by robots … there are human workers though. And someone had to do inspections for QA, program and maintain the robots, design the parts, engineer them, fabricate them – there’s tooling and dies and stamping. So it’s a bigger and more diffuse group of people, many of whom no longer work for Ford. (guess the bots might still be working somewhere)