Honda Automobile (Thailand) Co Ltd on Tuesday began destroying 1,055 cars that were damaged in this year’s floods while vowing to continue manufacturing in the kingdom.
The cars that were scrapped were made at the Rojana Industrial Park when the industrial estate in Ayutthaya, 100 kilometers north of Bangkok, was flooded October 8.
The factory has the capacity to assemble 240,000 cars a year and is the second-largest automobile factory in Thailand. It makes Brio, Jazz, City, Civic and Accord models for the Thai market and 30 other countries.
“I want to confirm that Honda will not move its manufacturing to another country,” said Pitak Pruittisarikorn, executive vice president of Honda’s Thai subsidiary. “We will stay close to our customers and Thai society.”
Production was halted October 5 as the swollen Chao Phraya River threatened to swamp the park, which was built on a natural flood plain.
“While we were able to relocate many new cars that were awaiting shipments to a safe area, 1,055 vehicles that remained in the plant were damaged by the flood,” Pitak said.
Honda has yet to say when the factory would reopen or to provide an estimate of the damage caused by the floods, but the work stoppage alone has meant 60,000 vehicles were not manufactured over the past three months.
This year’s monsoon floods were the worst Thailand has suffered in five decades, claiming at least 760 lives and causing billions of dollars in damage to homes and factories.