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Flood damage causes delay in Toyota vehicle orders

Suthentira Govender Senior reporter
An aerial photograph shows the extent of the flood damage to Toyota SA's Prospecton production facility. File photo.
An aerial photograph shows the extent of the flood damage to Toyota SA's Prospecton production facility. File photo.
Image: Supplied

Orders for Hilux, Fortuner, Corolla Cross and Quest vehicles will take longer to deliver due to the extensive flood damage Toyota SA Motors (TSAM) suffered at its Prospecton, Durban, plant.

Senior vice-president Leon Theron said on Friday while delivery of locally built models will be affected in the short term, plans have been put into place to prioritise existing orders.

“We really appreciate the patience exhibited by our customers — yes, Hilux, Fortuner, Corolla Cross and Quest orders are going to take little longer, but please be assured that they will be filled the moment our new supply kicks in.

“As far as imported models go, it’s business as usual. In fact, we have requested extra units to compensate for the temporary lack of availability on locally built models.”

The motor manufacturer said it was implementing “a systematic and meticulous phased plan to return its south Durban plant”.

It said the approach is designed to ensure a safe start-up, without any potential secondary issues.

“Clean-up operations are progressing at a pace in different areas — the first three phases include the establishment of temporary utilities at the plant, cleaning up and then powering up the machinery.

“Once the trial power-up stage is reached, certain areas of the facility will then be able to move to phase 4, which involves an accurate assessment and equipment check.” 

CEO and president Andrew Kirby said: “It is only once we commence with this phase that we will be able to adequately judge the realistic lead time to resume production.

“As you can imagine, there will be a mountain of repairs to be made along with many parts that will need to be ordered. It would therefore be irresponsible of us to call a start-up date until we have the full picture. We anticipate firming up dates within the next week.”

More than 50 maintenance and engineering experts are on site and more will arrive next week.


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