All Tesla workers at the company’s battery factory in Reno, Nevada will be required to wear masks indoors beginning Monday, The Wall Street Journal reported. The plant already required workers unvaccinated against COVID-19 to wear masks indoors, but the new rule includes vaccinated workers as well.
According to the Johns Hopkins Coronavirus Resource Center, Nevada has seen more than 26,000 new COVID infections in the past month and 298 deaths. The center estimates that nearly 47 percent of the state’s population has been vaccinated.
At the beginning of the pandemic last year, Tesla CEO Elon Musk pushed back against COVID restrictions, including stay-at-home orders in Alameda County, California, where its Fremont plant is located. While the company eventually agreed to temporarily shut down operations at the Fremont facility in March 2020, Musk announced in May 2020 that he was reopening the plant in defiance of local shelter-in-place orders, going so far as to sue the county and threatening to move Tesla operations out of California. In November, Musk tweeted that he likely had a “moderate case of covid.”
On August 3rd of this year, California updated its mask rules, requiring everyone 2 years of age and older to wear masks in indoor public settings, regardless of vaccination status.
Nevada Gov. Steve Sisolak revived that state’s mask mandate late last month, just ahead of new guidance from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. People in Nevada must wear face masks indoors in public in counties that have “substantial or high transmission,” which included Clark, where Las Vegas is located, and Washoe, where Reno is.