Kentucky businesses collaborate to address PPE shortage

Posted at 3:50 PM, Aug 11, 2020
and last updated 2020-08-11 19:20:11-04

LEXINGTON, Ky. (LEX 18) — A pair of local businesses have teamed up to help alleviate the local and nationwide PPE shortage.

Toyota, one of the largest employers in central Kentucky, and Bullard, a manufacturer that makes protective equipment for first responders and construction workers, said they decided to collaborate after hearing about the country's need for additional PPE equipment.

Toyota's goal is to bring in their production equipment to make sure materials flow smoothly from start to finish.

"That way we can increase the output versus other ways of producing in batches," Jamie Bonini, of Toyota, said.

With Toyota's help, Bullard can produce their products faster.

"We saw a 700 percent increase in our face shield products, we've seen an 85 percent increase in our ability to produce respirators and doubled the capacity of our hoods," Bullard Vice President of Marketing Wes Johnson said.

Tom Jones, of Toyota, said he hopes producing the extra PPE equipment can help alleviate at least one concern medical personnel might have as they treat patients during the pandemic.

"This pandemic is incredibly difficult medically," he said. "And you add on top that healthcare workers being worried about their own health and their own protection."